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Article updated: 10/22/2013 10:55 AM

Metra trains to roll through Bartlett normally Tuesday

Crash Monday sent two people to hospital

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Commuters who use the Milwaukee District West Line should experience a typical Tuesday morning rush hour, Metra officials said, after a crash Monday near downtown Bartlett sent two people to the hospital and closed the tracks in both directions for more than two hours.

As of 5:19 a.m. Tuesday, officials posted on the website that normal operations are anticipated this morning.

Commuters can find the latest bulletins at metrarail.com

A semitrailer truck transporting five cars collided with an inbound train approaching the Bartlett station at 3:38 p.m., officials said.

The crash -- which happened near Western Avenue and Railroad Avenue -- caused a minor derailment and ceased all travel until about 6 p.m., said Michael Gillis, Metra spokesman.

About 25 passengers were on the train at the time of the crash, he said.

The impact caused two of the five vehicles on the car carrier to be thrown off into the Metra parking lot south of the tracks, said Bartlett police Cmdr. Michael McGuigan. The cars damaged parked vehicles.

The semi driver was not injured, and the two injured passengers were taken to St. Alexius Medical Center in Hoffman Estates with minor injuries, he said.

Dave Olson, who lives about five blocks away in Bartlett, was outside as a crew was installing trees in front of his house. They all heard the crash from afar.

"What we heard was, over all the noise of the machinery and everything ... was just a crushing sound, and the operator of the machine just stopped and said, 'What was that? Did we blow a gas line or something?' And I'm like, 'No, that's something else.' And then we just heard everything start going from fire house No. 1."

Olson said they came upon the scene and first thought one of the train cars was turned in the direction of a downtown store rather than the tracks.

"And I'm like, what the heck is out of turn here? It's the car carrier. (The train) actually split the truck in half," he said. Inbound and outbound trains took turns funneling through Bartlett throughout Monday evening on one set of tracks until the crash was entirely cleaned up, Gillis said.

The cause of the crash is still under investigation by Metra police. The intersection does have crossing guards and lights, McGuigan said.

Metra officials wouldn't know if the track has been damaged until a crane puts the train back onto the track, Gillis said.


• Daily Herald staff photographer Patrick Kunzer contributed to this report.

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