Woman in MARC pedestrian walkway struck by freight train

A woman crossing the tracks was struck by a freight train in Point of Rocks, Maryland, bringing both nearby car and commuter rail traffic to a standstill in Frederick County, Maryland, on Thursday morning.

Maryland State Police said a 36-year-old Virginia woman who was crossing a pedestrian walkway to get to the platform was struck by a CSX freight train shortly before 8 a.m. at the Point of Rocks MARC train station along Route 28.

The woman was taken to a shock trauma center in Baltimore for medical treatment. Her condition is not known.

A conductor and engineer on board the train that struck the woman told investigators they sounded the train’s audible horn before striking the woman, which was confirmed by other witnesses at the scene, according to state police.

A witness who emailed WTOP noted that the eastbound MARC platform location requires riders to cross the tracks from the parking lot on the north side of the station. The woman who was hit did not seem to be aware that the train was coming, “because she walked right in front of it,” according to the writer of the email.

The passengers were waiting for the eastbound MARC train to arrive at 7:55 a.m., and the incident occurred at about 7:50 a.m.

Footage from WTOP’s news partner NBC Washington indicated the train involved was a CSX freight train. A video feed from the NBC Washington news chopper showed a CSX train stopped at the tracks near the scene of the crash.

Maryland State Police are leading the investigation. CSX police and management were on scene to assist with the investigation.

The roadway along the rail tracks was closed in both directions after the crash, but reopened later Thursday morning.

The tracks are shared with the MARC train’s Brunswick line. The Maryland Transit Administration reported that the 7:45 MARC train scheduled to leave from Brunswick (880) had been canceled, and the previous train (894) was holding in Gaithersburg to accommodate more passengers who may have otherwise taken the canceled train.

The train line involved in the crash remains closed as of Thursday afternoon. All other lines are open.

Jack Moore

Jack Moore joined WTOP.com as a digital writer/editor in July 2016. Previous to his current role, he covered federal government management and technology as the news editor at Nextgov.com, part of Government Executive Media Group.

Dan Friedell

Dan Friedell is a digital writer for WTOP. He came to the D.C. area in 2007 to work as digital editor for USATODAY.com, and since then has worked for a number of local and national news organizations.

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