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Man dies in auto-train wreck


An auto-train accident early Saturday morning claimed the life of a 21-year-old Idaho man.

Adrian Thomas of Pocatello was reportedly killed when the vehicle he was riding in was struck from behind by a train on Aug. 4.

The fatal accident occurred about seven miles southeast of Ridge Road.

According to Carbon County Chief Deputy Guy Adams, the car driven by Ryan John Scott, 21, also of Pocatello, was purportedly traveling down a side road when the vehicle turned left onto the tracks, apparently in an attempt to cross the rails.

The vehicle became high centered on the tracks. In the process of trying to get the car off the rails, the driver reportedly ended up working the vehicle around until it was parallel with the tracks.

At that point, according to Adams, two unidentified girls riding in the back seat of the car yelled that a train was coming from behind the vehicle.

Everyone got out of the car, except Thomas, who was riding in the middle of the back seat.

Vocal attempts by the other four individuals traveling inside the car did not coax the victim out to exit the vehicle.

Finally, Scott apparently tried to physically pull his friend out of the car, but the driver was unable to do so.

When the train struck the car, Scott was still standing next to the vehicle and the force of the impact threw the driver a hundred feet off to the side of the tracks. He was uninjured by the hit, however.

The three girls who had been riding in the car, all reportedly from Price and Helper, were also not injured in the accident.

Because of the nature of the incident, Adams indicated that the Utah Highway Patrol assisted in the investigation of the accident. At the same time, the county sheriff's department started a criminal investigation into the matter.

Scott was cited for driving under the influence of an intoxicant. The driver was also arrested on an automobile homicide charge based on the facts in the case.

In an unrelated incident, an East Carbon youth sustained head and internal injuries in a single car roll over in Sunnyside Canyon last Thursday.

At 6 p. m. on Aug. 2, 16-year-old Lynn R. Gates and 15-year-old William Shumway were reportedly traveling southbound on State Road 123 in Sunnyside Canyon on a highway that alternates between paved and dirt surface.

The 1999 Pontiac Sunfire registered to Woodi C. Reed purportedly hit a turn where the surface turned from pavement to dirt and ran off the left side of the road, said Sgt. Don Kelley, Utah Highway Patrol.

The vehicle impacted with a dirt embankment and flipped over onto its top. The Pontiac then hit a second dirt embankment and finally came to rest upside down on the road facing northwest.

According to the UHP sergeant, the driver of the vehicle, Gates, was ejected through the rear window. He sustained head and internal injuries. The 16-year-old youth was transported to Castleview Hospital and then air flighted to LDS Hospital.

The passenger, Shumway, remained in the vehicle throughout the ordeal and sustained a minor hand injury.

According to Kelley, neither of the youth were reportedly wearing seatbelts at the time of the crash.

No citations have been issued in connection with the single-vehicle mishap, but speed is being considered as a contributing factor, concluded the UHP sergeant.

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