Florida jogger wearing headphones killed by train

Reuters News
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Posted: Mar 31, 2015 10:54 AM

By Barbara Liston

ORLANDO, Fla. (Reuters) - A Florida jogger wearing headphones was struck and killed by an Amtrak train, apparently unable to hear the conductor sounding the horn, authorities said on Tuesday.

Edwardo Salazar, 26, of Frostproof in central Florida, died on Monday afternoon while jogging on the tips of the wood crossbeams outside the track’s metal rails, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office reported.

Salazar’s headphones were plugged into his iPod, according to the report.

"The headphones likely led to him not hearing the train," said sheriff spokeswoman Carrie Horstman, adding Salazar might not have known that a train’s girth is wider than the metal rails.

The conductor on Amtrak’s 98 Silver Meteor train traveling from Miami to New York tried unsuccessfully to stop the train before the impact, according to the sheriff’s office, which is investigating the accident.

Deaths and serious injuries among pedestrians listening to headphones are a known and increasing hazard. Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in 2012 found that injuries and deaths involving pedestrians wearing headphones tripled between 2004 and 2011.

Pedestrians were killed in three-fourths of the incidents studied, the researchers reported.

(Editing by David Adams and Mohammad Zargham)