Metra Train Slams Into Car In Palatine; Driver Killed

UPDATED 12/27/11 11:22 a.m.

PALATINE, Ill. (CBS) — Metra trains on the Union Pacific Northwest line were halted Monday morning, after an inbound train slammed into a car in Palatine.

The accident happened about 7:30 a.m. at Brockway Street in Palatine when train No. 622 hit a car on the inbound tracks, Metra spokesman Michael Gillis said.

It took crews 25 minutes to extricate the man from the vehicle and he was dead at the scene, police said.

He was identified as Michael Levgard, 64, of Palatine.

The train left McHenry at 6:52 a.m. and had been scheduled to arrive in downtown Chicago at 8:13 a.m., but the accident caused significant delays on that line.

Police are looking into whether the man drove around lowered gates or whether the 1999 Mercury he was driving somehow got stuck on the tracks, Palatine police Cmdr. Craig Lesselyoung said.

A reconstruction team remained at the scene at 10:30 a.m.

The train was carrying passengers at the time and sustained minor damage to the front car, which required maintenance before the train could be moved. One passenger on the train required minor medical assistance and was released back to Metra after being seen by paramedics, police said.

The smashed car was removed and the tracks were reopened at 10:30 a.m. Trains began moving at that point, but delays were still reported.

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.

  • Kelly Basden

    Steve, hate much?

    • Steve

      Kelly, no, I do not hate. I am simply intolerant of people who do stupid things than they, and/or their family, will try to lay blame elsewhere.

      • Kelly Basden

        I’m not buying it. You must be perfect. Bummer for you.

  • Kelly Basden

    Steve, once when I was a young man living in Brady, WA. a friend and I were out driving in his Datsun B210. There is a railroad crossing just off of SR 12. We pulled off of SR 12 and headed north. As we got to the crossing, the car stalled, not because the driver was distracted, this being 1976, but because the engine died. We were on the tracks. Here is the location, 46°59’43.40″N-123°30’42.40″W.

    As we looked to the east, a train was coming. We were freaking. As he tried to start the car, we were deciding to bail. At about 75′ from us, the engine started, he popped the clutch and we flew off of the tracks. We both got out of the car and embraced each other in sheer delight for being spared. I will never forget that day, and it has now been over 40 years ago. I have never since been so frightened.

    People, other than you obviously, make mistakes. I am sorry for your disdain for others and your cynicism for life alone.

  • Steve

    Kelly, I’m not buying it. You must be perfect. Bummer for you.

    • Kelly Basden

      Incredible, Steve. Really incredible.

      • Steve

        You deserve all the credit. You seem to appear the bellwether.


    the train was where it was supposed to be, auto in wrong place

    • the rapture

      gates down – train has right of way

    • Steve

      Don’t tell Kelly that.

  • Eddie Murphy Jr.

    What have we got going on here? Kindergartner children? Na na na na na nah!!! Steve, you are an airhead. Kelly, don’t play up to stupidity.

    • Steve

      Eddie, When you have something relevant to write, please do so. Otherwise, it would be best if you simply just hush. You have a time out, to correspond to your childish comment.

  • Bill S.

    Rest in peace.

    • Steve

      Yes. And sincere condolences to his family and friends.

  • Woody

    A good man who made a terrible mistake…..Rest in peace Bogey

  • kellyjdrummer

    Eddie, I won’t. My sympathies to the family and friends as well. Any life lost for whatever reason is a tragedy.

  • Gabriel

    Suicide is a selfish act, a travesty, a middle-finger up to the world to say you’ve had enough.

  • Gabriel

    Suicide is the final act of a coward who cannot face his or her shortcomings.

  • Train Crash « Lwoods4's Blog

    […] Here is a link to the article I mentioned in my previous post. Below is what the car looked like. […]

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