Train and a semi-truck collide in Coralville


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Johnson County emergency-rescue teams responded to a train and truck collision at the intersection of Deer Creek Road and Highway 6 after receiving a call around noon Monday.

According to a Coralville police official, a Peterson Contractors Inc. semitruck was heading west on Highway 6 in Coralville when it turned left onto Deer Creek Road in front of a train going 39 mph. Deer Creek Road was blocked until the road crews cleared the way.

"The driver suffered only minor injuries and was lucky to be alive," Coralville police Lt. Bruce Freeman said.

The semitruck driver was transported to a hospital, according to a Johnson County Ambulance official.

Diane McCauley, Iowa Department of Transportation policy analyst, said even with the recent accident, the number of train-truck collisions have decreased overall in the last few years.

"We feel that the safety is being improved in education and enforcement," she said.

McCauley said the numbers of crashes tend to stay in a certain range.

In 2010, there were 49 accidents involving trucks on highway railroad crossings, 64 in 2008. In 2011, 37 such crashes occurred in Iowa.

Coralville Fire Chief Dave Stannard said the train did not derail, and most of the damage was done to the semitruck. The product the train was carrying did not have much value, he said, and he estimated the damage to be approximately $100,000.

DI Photo Editor Adam Wesley contributed to the story.

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