Young woman killed by train may have been reading, wearing headphones: RCMP

An 18-year-old woman has died after being hit by a train in southern Alberta.

RCMP were called around to Centre Street in Bow Island around 9 a.m. on Friday, for reports of a pedestrian being struck by a train.

EMS rushed her to hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

Investigators say the victim was walking across a marked railway crossing as a train approached. Despite flashing red lights, alarm bells and the train blowing its horn, she continued to cross the tracks and was hit.

“She had some earphones in, or earbuds, and didn’t see the train coming,” said Cst. Jarom Leafloor of the Bow Island RCMP.

Witnesses saw the horrific accident unfold. They told police that in addition to wearing headphones, the woman may have also been reading.

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School district officials declined an interview, but confirm the young woman was enrolled at Senator Gershaw School.

The incident has left many in the tight-knit community reeling.

“I think everyone is shocked and stunned something like this happened here,” said Gordon Reynolds, the town’s mayor.

There is no railway crossing arm at the intersection, even though the town has been asking for years for one to be installed.

“We were told by CP, as a result of budget cuts, we fell down the list,” said Reynolds. “Sadly, (they told us) it’s because there had been no fatalities.”

The victim’s name has not been released.