Grade-crossing collision kills driver, derails UP train in Southern Illinois

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FULTS, Ill. — A Union Pacific train hit a tractor at a grade crossing in a rural area about 40 miles south of St. Louis on Friday evening, killing the driver of the tractor and derailing 30 cars of the train.

The Republic-Times newspaper reports that Monroe County coroner identified the victim as 23-year-old Jonah Matthews of Waterloo, Ill. A statement from the coroner said Matthews was “driving a tractor southwest across the tracks when he was struck and killed by a southbound train.” Police reported the crossing had no gates.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported hazardous-material teams were dispatched to the scene; KTVI-TV in St. Louis reported that while several cars of the train caught fire, but no hazardous materials were involved.

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