Teen Killed by Train Made No Attempt to Move, Officials Say
15-year-old Spring Lake Heights boy hit by NJ Transit train late Wednesday night
A teenager from Spring Lake Heights who died Wednesday night after he was hit by a train apparently made no attempt to get out of the way, officials said.
Shortly after 10 p.m., a 15-year-old boy was struck by a northbound NJ Transit train near the Wall Road rail crossing in Spring Lake and died at the scene, Spring Lake Police Lt. Gerald Preston said.
The preliminary investigation revealed that the boy walked onto the tracks Wednesday night and did not try moving from the path of the oncoming train, NJ Transit spokesman John Durso Jr. said. The full investigation is still being conducted by NJ Transit Police, Durso said.
NJ Transit released the boy's name, but Patch is withholding that information as policy when suicide is a possible cause of death.
Local counselors have volunteered to be available at the Spring Lake Heights Recreation Center tonight and tomorrow night from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m., according to Fran Miceli, clinical director of the Samaritan Center, a nonprofit counseling center in Manasquan.
Two local youths were killed by trains in 2008 near the same Wall Road crossing. Authorities later ruled both incidents suicides.
From 2008 to 2009, four Manasquan High School students or recent graduates at the time were hit and killed by NJ Transit trains. The most recent was a 17-year-old from Spring Lake Heights who died Oct. 2009.
And as recently as last year, two women in separate local incidents died when their vehicles were hit by trains.
The state recently announced that it was stepping up safety measures along its railroad tracks after a recorded 81 recent accidents across New Jersey.
Fifty one of those incidents were fatal, according to a report from NJ Transit and the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT), prompting the agencies to come up some with ideas to promote safety and reduce accidental deaths.
For nearly three hours late Wednesday into early Thursday, local, county and NJ Transit officials investigated the scene along the northbound track, roughly 100 yards north of the Wall Road crossing.
Service was temporarily suspended from Long Branch to Bay Head but has since resumed, Durso said.
Durso said 12 passengers were on the train at the time of the incident, but none were injured. Buses picked up the passengers and brought them to their destinations, he said.
NJ Transit Police are leading the investigation.