A man was taken to a hospital by helicopter after the pickup he was driving was struck by the northbound Amtrak Crescent passenger train this morning.
The wreck occurred just south of Howard Industries on Industrial Park Road, said Ellisville Police Chief Bruce Russell, who was first on the scene.
He said the driver of the pickup was ejected and found lying in a ditch with cuts all over his body. The driver was alert but had lost a lot of blood, Russell said.
The identity of the driver was not immediately known, but he was taken by EMServ ambulance to Jones and Sons Funeral Home where LifeFlight landed to transport him.
Witnesses said the train came around the bend and the truck either stopped or stalled on the tracks. It was unclear whether the truck went around the railroad crossing gates and the incident will remain under investigation.
The Crescent, which connects New Orleans to New York City, left Hattiesburg at 9:45 — 15 minutes late — and was due in to Laurel at about 10:20. At 11:15 Tuesday morning, the Crescent arrived at Laurel.
The Crescent runs two trains per day — a northbound that leaves New Orleans at 7 a.m. and the southbound train, which is scheduled to arrive each day in Laurel at about 4 p.m.
The truck was totaled and pieces of it were strewn throughout the area, Russell said.