Amtrak train crash Orlando: No cross bar installed at crossing

Authorities investigate why truck driver didn't stop for Amtrak train

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Troopers are trying to figure out why a truck driver failed to stop at an Orange County train crossing Thursday morning moments before a fiery fatal crash between the truck and an Amtrak train.

The truck's driver, Seeram Matadial, 44, was killed. Fifteen of 140 passengers on the train were treated for minor injuries, and four were transported to Orlando Regional Medical Center.

All four had been discharged by Thursday evening.

Stop signs are located on both sides of the tracks at the Orange Avenue and Glenrose Avenue crossing, but there currently are no cross bars at the intersection.

Troopers say it's unclear why the truck driver didn't stop but say he had a clear view of the tracks.

However, witnesses say it's not the first time they've seen accidents at the crossing.

"I know somebody has called them [authorities], and they say it's not like a main road, so they don't have to put up the cross bar," said Fernando Rodriguez, who works near the tracks.

He said he is concerned that another accident will happen if they're not installed soon.

"I think they should put a cross bar. It happened before, it happened today and it's going to happen again. And the only way to stop it is to put in a cross bar, because people have to stop if the cross bar is down."

Rodriguez described the fiery train crash as "like a big boom -- a lot of smoke and fire.

"We heard the big explosion, and when we looked, there was a big cloud of smoke and fire. We started running over there.

"The truck was in pieces. ... The engine was 200 yards from there. The cab was on the other side."

Investigators say the driver was thrown 150 feet from the crash.

A Florida Department of Transportation spokesman said the intersection is the future site of a SunRail stop, and plans are in place to install a cross bar by 2014. The National Transportation Safety Board will not investigate the Amtrak crash, it said.

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