The PCSO Traffic Unit investigated a vehicle crash on train tracks this morning, which resulted in serious bodily injury to the vehicle driver. Preliminary details are:
PCSO received a 911 call around 8:40 a.m. this morning (Monday, May 10, 2021) from the area of Reynolds Road approximately 300 feet north of CR 542 in Lakeland. Upon deputies’ arrival, they located 37-year-old Cory Silas of Lakeland entrapped in his 2017 black Nissan, in a ditch alongside the railroad tracks.
The evidence and witnesses indicated that Silas was traveling southbound on Reynolds Road. The railroad crossing arms were down and the warning lights were activated at the railroad crossing, and a CSX train was approaching. Silas drove around the crossing arms and into the northbound lane of Reynolds when his Nissan was struck by the eastbound train. Nobody on the train was injured. The Nissan was pushed approximately 75 feet until it separated from the train and came to a final rest in a ditch along the south edge of the tracks.
The train contained two engines and 44 cars, and was hauling rocks. It was traveling between 45-50 MPH at the time of the crash.
Silas suffered critical injuries, and is listed as stable in the hospital. He was the only occupant of his vehicle. The area where the crash occurred was closed for approximately 2.5 hours during the investigation. A photo from the scene is attached (the red truck in the photo is a tow truck).