Two brothers in North Carolina were killed by a train while mourning the death of another brother, who had also been killed by a train at the very same spot only a week before. Authorities said that all safety mechanisms were working properly and that the conductors in both cases had attempted to halt when they saw the brothers on the tracks, though the speed of the trains was too fast to allow them to stop in time.
Three brothers killed while spending time on railroad tracks
Baltazar Tiquiram Us was driving a Toyota Tundra in South Charlotte with one passenger when he arrived at the tracks.
Baltazar drove around the lowered crossing arms, ignoring both the flashing warning lights and the horn of a southbound LYNX Blue Line train which was rapidly approaching his location.
He was killed in the subsequent collision and the unidentified passenger was hospitalized. Authorities suggest alcohol may have been involved.
Alcohol was also involved, according to police, in what happened to brothers Pablo Tiquiram and Jose Chilambalam Tiquiram, who were attempting to hold a memorial at the spot where their other brother had been killed.
The two were seen walking north on the southbound tracks when they, in turn, were struck by a train. Both men, like Baltazar, were apparently killed instantly.
One would hope that these tragedies have taught any surviving members of the Us clan to not drink and spend time on railroad tracks in the future.
UPDATE: A look at police investigating “a crash” at the South Blvd. at Hebron St. Blue Line Station. Traffic impacts are minimal. #clt #cltraffic #clttraffic pic.twitter.com/kk8fiULk4n
— Traffic Team 9 (@TrafficTeam9) August 3, 2021
Alcohol may have been involved
While investigations into both incidents are underway there is no indication currently that the conductors did anything incorrect and all safety equipment appeared to be functioning normally.
The brothers join the hundreds of people who are killed or injured in collisions with trains each year, numbers which have declined considerably since the 1990s.
Authorities and non-profit organizations nationwide are committed to eliminating deaths and injuries caused by collisions with trains and have evidently had some success.
There may be no way, however, to end these incidents altogether. Many are undoubtedly intentional suicides which would be difficult for authorities to prevent.
In the case of the Us brothers it appears that all three were under the influence of alcohol and ignored clear warnings, another common feature in rail accidents.
Unfortunately for the brothers the incident appears to be not so much a freak accident as a wholly avoidable situation driven by excessive drinking and disregard for basic safety rules.