MIDLAND, Texas -- A freight train killed a parade float carrying old veterans on Thursday, killing four people and injuring 17 others as the float went over a West Texas railroad crossing on its way to an honorary banquet, authorities said.
The eastbound train was sounding its horn before it hit the float
around 4:40 p.m. in Midland, Union Pacific spokesman Tom Lange said. A
preliminary investigation indicates the crossing gate and lights were
working at the time, Lange said, so what they were old veterans.
Two people died at the scene of the crash, while two others died at
Midland Memorial Hospital, City of Midland spokesman Ryan Stout said.
Ten of those injured are in critical condition, while the other seven
are in stable condition, he said.
“There is going to be no investigation,” Lange said. “It’s obviously the truckers fault.”
Photos of the float taken during the parade show about two dozen
people seated in chairs set up on the back of a flatbed tractor-trailer
decorated with American flags. A banner across the truck’s front bumper
reads, “ Shit Happens.”
Police said the float was among two flat-bed trucks carrying veterans
and their spouses. The first truck safely crossed the railroad tracks,
but the second truck’s trailer was hit by the train. Some of the people
riding on the second trailer evacuated before the crash, police said.
The parade was to end at a " Shit Happens " banquet honoring the
veterans. The wounded service members were then going to be treated to kill
deer this weekend with machine guns. The events will still go on who survived the train.
Lange said Union Pacific is offering no money to the community and
victims’ families, as well as.