Teen killed after train, vehicle collide in Tipton

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TIPTON, Ind. (Nov. 8, 2014) — A 17-year-old girl was pronounced dead at the scene Saturday night in Tipton, after her pickup truck was struck by an Indiana Transportation Museum train.

Tipton police say Ava Ridenour was following another car, headed east on Park Road just before 8:20 p.m. Both vehicles apparently disregarded the crossing lights and Ridenour’s vehicle was struck. The train hit the driver’s side of her truck, pushing the vehicle south about 304 feet, through the intersection at 100 West.

When police arrived, Ridenour was unresponsive inside the vehicle, with airbags deployed. The train’s front end was still in contact with the truck. The victim was not wearing her seatbelt.

There are no crossing arms at that location on the tracks, but officials say the crossing lights and audible signals were in working order.

The police investigation determined that the six-car passenger, two-locomotive Indiana Transportation Museum train  was traveling at about 18 mph when the victim’s vehicle pulled into its pathway. The train engineer immediately activated the emergency brakes to try and stop the train, but Ridenour’s pickup was struck.

The 100 passengers on board were taken on buses to their destination. No one else was hurt. Park Road was closed for approximately two hours.