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Downtown traffic blocked for 2 hours after train hits car

A train collided with a car Monday morning in downtown Thomson, causing traffic to be blocked for two hours. Four people were taken by ambulances to the Medical College of Georgia Hospital. The driver remained in critical condition Monday evening according to MCG spokeswoman Denise Parrish.

Thomson Police Sgt. Jammie Smith said Freddie Virginia Becks, 54, of Lincolnton, drove her Honda Accord in front of the train, which was traveling west and pulling nearly 80 empty cars. Sgt. Smith said Ms. Becks was cited for failure to stop at a railroad crossing with flashing lights.

There were three passengers in the car. Sgt. Smith said the names and condition of the passengers are not being released because they are residents of a personal care home in Lincoln County.

Personnel with the Thomson Police Department, Thomson Fire/Rescue, and McDuffie County Emergency Medical Services responded to the scene.

The accident occurred at the railroad crossing on Greenway Street at 10:20 a.m. The train's engine had passed the Main Street crossing before it was able to stop completely. Traffic along both streets was blocked until 12:20 p.m.

The accident is the third in recent years at the Greenway Street crossing, according to McDuffie Mirror reports. A woman was killed in May 2008, after the car she was driving was struck by a train. In January, a dump truck crossing the tracks also was struck, but no one was injured.

Web posted on Thursday, September 16, 2010

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