Two teens dead after train strikes vehicle in Bartholomew County


The aftermath of a vehicle struck by a train which left two dead.

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BARTHOLOMEW COUNTY, Ind. — Two Columbus teens have died following an accident involving a train striking a vehicle in Bartholomew County late Friday night.

The deceased have been identified as Matthew Newland, 18 and Carmyn Elkins, 17, both of Columbus.

According to the Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department, deputies responded to the scene, located at N. US 31 and W. 550 N., in response to a single vehicle having been struck by a train.

Upon arrival, deputies observed a train south of the intersection with front end damage and a gray 2015 Nissan Versa with heavy damage which was located in a field southeast of the intersection. Two occupants were reported to be in the Nissan, both unconscious and trapped.

Columbus Fire Department extricated both occupants and Columbus EMS transported Newland to Columbus Regional Health and Elkins to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis. Both were pronounced dead at the hospitals.

According to the sheriff’s department, a witness on scene advised the Nissan has turned from southbound US 31 to travel east on W. 550 N. where it failed to yield to the southbound train. The witness reportedly stated the railroad crossing equipment was working properly as the train was approaching and that the train sounded its horn several times.

Deputies are reviewing footage of the crash from the train dash camera.

The engineer and the conductor were both uninjured.

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