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FedEx driver dies in collision with Amtrak train outside Kansas City

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Posted at 10:10 AM, Feb 07, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-07 18:49:08-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Missouri State Highway Patrol said one person died Tuesday in a crash involving an Amtrak train and a FedEx truck.

The patrol identified the FedEx truck driver killed in the crash as Patrick Metz, 34, of Kansas City, Mo.

The patrol said via Twitter the collision between the passenger train and truck happened at the South Hereford Road crossing near Smart Road west of Pleasant Hill, Missouri.

A map of current Amtrak trains in the area shows Train No. 318, the Missouri River Runner/Lincoln Service, stopped in the area just after 9:30 a.m. The train left Kansas City’s Union Station at 8:40 a.m. with service to St. Louis and Chicago.

Missouri State Highway Patrol Sgt. Bill Lowe said 35 passengers were on board at the time of the crash. None of the passengers or crew members were hurt.

Metz died at the scene.

"We extend our deepest condolences to the family and friends of those involved in this accident," a FedEx spokesperson said in a statement to KSHB 41. "Safety is our highest priority, and we are cooperating fully with the investigating authorities at this time."

Lowe said the train remained on the tracks and no major roads were blocked.

The initial investigation showed the truck was attempting to cross the tracks when it failed to yield to the southbound Amtrak train.

The train, which was damaged, was delayed and pulled from service. Passengers on the train at the time will finish their route onboard a chartered bus.

“These crossings that are out here that are away from downtown are not real well-marked crossings, like the one that happened in Mendon, and they need to get better crossings put in," Pleasant Hill resident and train enthusiast Denise Graven said. "Had they had the proper markings, had they had the lights and bells instead of just the crossing sign, I’m sure that wouldn’t have happened.”

The passive grade crossing sits on private property, so it's not required to have any traffic-control devices by state or federal regulations. It's up to the private road's owner, who had installed stop signs in both directions.

It is too early to determine if the track will be affected for westbound trains that might use the area later this afternoon.