Motorist's Close Call With Train Caught on Tape

Train watcher tapes locomotives, posts videos on YouTube.

An Arlington trainspotter captured a close call on the railroad tracks on videotape in Fort Worth on Tuesday.

Richard Whitenight tapes trains as a hobby and posts his videos on the popular video-sharing Web site YouTube.

Whitenight said he has seen motorists try to beat a train, but nothing like the close call he recorded Tuesday.

He said a white pickup truck drove around a car that was stopped at the flashing lights of a railroad crossing at Decatur Avenue and 29th Street in Fort Worth. The driver then maneuvered past the railroad crossing arm and drive across the tracks, just missing an oncoming train, he said.
"The arms had already gone down about nine seconds earlier, and he goes around," Whitenight said.

He said he has been watching and recording locomotives in North Texas for five years.

"You can almost tell what engine it is strictly by the horn," he said.

He said he has posted approximately 756 videos on YouTube.

"You get the smell of diesel in your nose, and you start really getting into trains," Whitenight said.

Whitenight said trains are heavy and "cannot stop on a dime." He said he's always surprised how some drivers are willing to risk it all just to save a few minutes.

"How stupid they are, to be honest with you," he said.

Drivers who illegally cross a railroad block could face fines of up to a couple hundred dollars.

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