An elderly couple was killed in a crash involving a train in rural Kansas on Thursday night while driving home from their family’s Thanksgiving dinner, according to local officials.
Around 6:30 p.m. local time on Thursday, officials believe a slow-moving freight train struck the couple in their vehicle in Miami County.
The vehicle was pushed a considerable distance down the tracks while the train tried to stop. At some point, the vehicle caught fire, officials told KCTV.
The elderly victims, who are from the Kansas City metro area, had been on their way home from Thanksgiving dinner when the accident happened. Their adult son reportedly showed up at the scene after the accident.
“This is an emotional call for anybody involved in this,” said Capt. Matthew Kelly with the Miami County Sheriff’s Office said, according to KCTV. “Not just for the family but also for us on scene. Nobody wants to go to these calls. These are very traumatic for anybody involved. Anybody that has anything to do with this. I think it makes it even more traumatic on a holiday like this.”
He said his department has reached out to the victim’s family to offer any assistance.
The investigation — which will include checking whether the crossing’s railways and lights were functioning properly — is ongoing, officials said.