Tractor-Trailer Struck by Train

There were no injuries reported after a train struck a tractor-trailer stuck on the CSX tracks at Cherokee and Main Street.

A tractor-trailer was struck by a train today after getting stuck on the CSX track at Cherokee and Main Street in downtown Kennesaw.

Officers responded to the incident shortly before 6 p.m., according to a release from the

The tractor-trailer got stuck on the tracks at the intersection of Cherokee and Main Street. Just as the incident was being dispatched, a CSX train approached the intersection and struck the mid-section of the trailer, said police.

The driver of the tractor-trailer exited the vehicle before being hit. There were no reported injuries, said police.

Police said the tractor-trailer belongs to Atlanta Foods International and was being driven by 44-year-old Alando Hawkins. Hawkins was charged with not obeying the signal indicating an approaching train.

This isn't the first time a tractor-trailer has gotten stuck on the tracks at the same crossing, nor is it the first time one has been struck by a train there.

In a similar incident in December 2009, a tractor-trailer carrying supplies for Papa John's was hit at the same crossing.

Police said incidents of trucks getting stuck on the tracks have occurred on several occasions. Signage in the area clearly prohibits tractor-trailers from crossing the tracks.

Cherokee Street between Big Shanty Road and Main Street will be closed for the remainder of the night until the debris is removed and the tracks are deemed safe by CSX, said police.

As of about 8:15 p.m., police said the train had already been backed up and authorities were working on moving the tractor-trailer.

Lisa Drobney December 10, 2011 at 04:23 AM
I asked police why this continues to be a problem. They site drivers repeatedly admit to not seeing the signs because they are following GPS. BIGGER signs won't help if the drivers admit to paying more attention to GPS than their surroundings. CSX is in control of the intersection and needs to address the issue before someone gets hurt.
Heyboy December 10, 2011 at 04:50 AM
CSX controls the area around the tracks not any where else. Not all drivers are using a GPS the signs are small and the city will not do the right thing a put blinking yellow lights with warnings to make it known about the hazard. NO excuss for this crossing to keep being a problem due to city neglect. I have lived here longer then the mayor and all of the police .
Marcy December 10, 2011 at 11:06 AM
State law prohibits a train crossing from being higher than the road around it. This crossing is clearly higher. I wonder why they are allowed to violate the state law? Also, there are larger signs indicating to turn at the crossing to get to I75, the signs stating trucks are prohibited aren't visible until a truck is already in the turn lane.
Cris Eaton Welsh December 10, 2011 at 01:12 PM
there's a solution to address all of the road issues at that crossing unfortunately those solutions require a lot of money.... there are a large number of signs all the way down Cherokee Street prohibiting tractor-trailers from crossing the tracks.... just last week my four-year-old daughter even noticed the signs and told me that tractor-trailers werent allowed to come down that road. That being said as a business owner who owns a business directly on the tracks I can report to from first-hand conversations that the tractor-trailer that I have seen stuck over the course of the last 7 to 8 years have said that they were following the GPS and did ignore the signs. Over the last few months I have seen the new bus parking at the museum being used by some 18 wheelers as a turnaround when they realize they made a mistake. I can assure you this will be a topic at our Wednesday evening Council work session and I welcome any of you who have constructive comments and solutions to come and join us.
Cris Eaton Welsh December 10, 2011 at 01:35 PM
This is the depot park master plan to address the crossing. http://www.kennesaw-ga.gov/business/preset-2/preset-2
Joe Bozeman December 10, 2011 at 02:10 PM
Councilwoman Welsh is absolutely correct. This is one of the busiest railroads is the U.S. It is a crossing built in the 1800s when the population of Kennesaw was less than 1000. The signage on the streets is adequate and any truck driver should know that a tractor trailer will get stuck there. To make comments that city officials care more about Jiles Road projects than the crossing is ridiculous. The long term solution is being addressed, but it will be expensive. A bridge north of the museum is planned and the crossing will be closed. Most of you probably don't know this but the State of Georgia owns the railroad through Kennesaw, and it is leased to the CSX. People need to realize that railroad crossings are dangerous and be cautious when crossing. I agree that this problem needs to be addressed, but for the time being the solution is individual responsibility. I am tired of hearing about irresponsible truck drivers, disabled persons on scooters, and cape less heroes, being stuck on the Kennesaw crossing. To my knowledge there has only been one incident of bodily harm on this crossing in it's history. In the mid 1950s a man was killed while crossing the tracks and eye witnesses believed it was a case of suicide. And to you "heyboy", I have been in Kennesaw since 1944 and think you referring to city officials as "Bubbling" is very tacky.
Joe Bozeman December 10, 2011 at 02:32 PM
I would also like to add that the Jiles Road projects eliminated a crossing that would have been a bigger problem than the downtown crossing. This being the old crossing, now closed, at Moon Station.
Joe Bozeman December 10, 2011 at 02:52 PM
Marcy, If this is a Georgia State law, why not ask the State of Georgia? The State of Georgia owns this railroad and leases it to CSX. If I were CSX. I would try close this crossing TODAY. Now wouldn't that be a mess?
JACQUE December 10, 2011 at 06:31 PM
This problem existed long before our current Mayor and council and it will continue to exist until something is done. If you have some ideas that would help prevent more accidents then by all means voice them. Get involved and attend the next agenda meeting Wednesday night at city hall and talk to YOUR elected officials with YOUR ideas on how to prevent this problem! There's plenty of blame to go around in the city for our problems so how about you rise above that and try to contribute in a positive way to solve some of them and be part of some solutions!
Joe Bozeman December 10, 2011 at 07:29 PM
Very well said Jacque. You know me and I know you. I admire and respect people who post under their real name. These people who pop off and take cheap shots using a "cute" little nickname make me sick. If someone is not willing to use their real name, I find it hard to take their comments seriously. I wonder who this guy "Heyboy" is, if he has been in Kennesaw for 40 years, I am sure I have met him before.
Heyboy December 10, 2011 at 09:47 PM
And the current Mayor and council have done nothing to correct the on going problem. I saw the comment about using real names when posting. Little news I have been attacked at my home over comments that I have made on other sites besides this one. It is not safe to post with any type of comments in todays world using your real name. I do show up at most City Council meetings as many more should. I have fought for many things and have been promised many things that never come about. To speak up against a City Govt that is not truly representing all of the city is where I stand, so many older neighborhoods are being over looked while the city worries about a skate park that does nothing but take away from those who live in the city. No parking most days in the summer for we who live in Kennesaw. I have been positive over the years but sometimes you just have to fight the wrong the best you can.
Heyboy December 10, 2011 at 09:48 PM
I think the track was run before the road was built. And you are so right about those signs Marcy.
Heyboy December 10, 2011 at 09:53 PM
Chris the money spent on Jiles Road could have been spent correcting this problem. It seems lives are not that important when our city Fathers want the city to grow and make more money. I wish I could make meeting but will be out of town visiting a loved one fighting cancer. I will speak with a few friends who think like me and speak to them about attending. Until then way not try putting up larger signs with flashing lights like many red lights have around the metro area. Lives vs wider roads which should come first?
Heyboy December 10, 2011 at 10:10 PM
The signage must not be enough if truckers keep missing them. I like every thing that is going to be built on that side of the tracks but disagree with closing the crossing. It will take away from Main Street as No direct access will be from Cherokee to down town. Joe Bubbling was the kindest words I could think of if I where to write what I truly wanted then that would have been tacky. When is the last time that the city leaders have voted differently on major issues. Seems to be a cookie cutter City Govt and not a true representation of peoples wants and needs . See you in city hall soon just look for the short stout old man with a full head of gray hair.
Heyboy December 10, 2011 at 10:12 PM
What crossing would that be Joe? Jiles and Cherokee is the only real problem I see and it is still the same old mess.
Heyboy December 10, 2011 at 10:19 PM
Joe some of us use other names to protect ourselves and family from the nuts who are out and about on the internet. I have already had threats and have even encountered a person at my home due to differing views we shared on places like the patch. Yes we have met many many times over the years. Hope you get over being sick because you do not like my nickname .
Heyboy December 10, 2011 at 10:52 PM
Joe are you speaking of the R/R overpass just past Moon Station?
Joe Bozeman December 11, 2011 at 07:23 PM
Marcy. Heyboy is correct. Fact is, the track was built before there was a Kennesaw or any streets at all. It was called Big Shanty then and was nothing but a conglomeration of shacks and muddy roads.
Joe Bozeman December 11, 2011 at 07:33 PM
Heyboy, I am referring to the old crossing, closed now, at Moon Station and Baker Road. A Jiles Road Project eliminated that crossing by building the bridge over the tracks.
Joe Bozeman December 11, 2011 at 07:41 PM
Maybe I should change my name to "The Kennesaw Relic" and I am over my sickness about your nickname. I do have a little touch of a self inflicted virus today, but it will only last for 24 hours.
Heyboy December 11, 2011 at 09:07 PM
Joe that would be a funny name , "The Kennesaw Relic" I wish I would have thought of that one. I am not mad at you I know you have the best intrest of Kennesaw in mind when you post your ideas as I do when I post mine. See you in Kennesaw and around. Have a Merry Christmas and the best of wishes for OUR TOWN of Kennesaw.
Joe Bozeman December 12, 2011 at 11:34 AM
The crossing in downtown Kennesaw will not be a simple fix and it will reach far beyond our city government to solve the problem. This crossing is the highest point on the railroad between the Chatthoochee and Etowah Rivers. Trains cannot climb steep grades. To level this track would require grading from Noonday Crossing to Moon Station. The only solution is to divert traffic somewhere else and close that crossing. We can look at Acworth and Cartersville for a solution. Traffic was diverted from their dangerous crossings by the building of bridges. The solution cannot be corrected at the local level. It has to be addressed by all concerned, Kennesaw, the State of Georgia, the federal government and the CSX. IT WILL ALSO COST A TRAIN LOAD OF MONEY.
James Swift December 12, 2011 at 04:43 PM
High Definition footage of last Friday's railroad accident can be seen here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v­=HiQY9X2UcZE
Michael Jacobs December 12, 2011 at 09:52 PM
Thanks, James. Nice job. The URL is correct, but for some reason the hot link isn't working. Let's see if another stab at it will work: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HiQY9X2UcZE
Joe Bozeman December 15, 2011 at 11:22 AM
I was walking from the depot to the museum Wednesday when a tractor trailer came down Cherokee and stopped at the crossing. The driver got out and asked me if he could clear the crossing. I told him I did not think so. He said he saw the signs but was following his GPS. He backed into the depot parking lot and turned around. Oddly enough his destination was at Moon Station Road and Jiles Road. The GPS directed him down Cherokee Street instead of turning on Jiles Road off of I75.
Joe Bozeman December 15, 2011 at 12:40 PM
I am around the CSX tracks alot, I have the CSX emergency number programmed in my cell phone. I suggest if you around the tracks often to load the number in your cell phone 1-800-232-0144. The dispatcher can alert a train crew in seconds if there is a problem on the tracks.
Gaetana Pipia December 16, 2011 at 12:11 AM
Thank you for the helpful information, Joe!
Joe Bozeman December 16, 2011 at 05:16 PM
As I type this message there is another truck stuch on the crossing in Kennesaw.
Heyboy December 27, 2011 at 05:03 AM
In looking over the signs leading up to the crossing I noticed most if not all where low to the road and not high where the drivers of these rigs could see them easily. One fix cold be to raise the signs to a higher level so truckers could see them better. Yes they may be using a GPS but their eyes are not always on the unit and the higher signs would make them much easier to see. Maybe even add a few yellow blinking warning lights to help them see much better.
Heyboy December 27, 2011 at 05:05 AM
Thanks for posting the Emergenchy phone number for CSX Joe, I have added it to my list on my iphone as well. Just in case.


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