Saturday, March 08, 2008

Bad Week: Death on the Tracks in Leucadia

Two woman have died on the train tracks in Leucadia in separate incidents this week.

March 03, 2008
Woman hit, killed by train in Encinitas

A woman was killed Monday night when she walked onto the railroad tracks and was struck by a freight train in the Leucadia community of Encinitas, authorities said.

The incident occurred shortly after 10 p.m. near Ashbury Street and North Vulcan Avenue, a North Comm fire dispatcher said. Sheriff's Lt. Mike McClain said it wasn't clear if it was an accident or suicide.

The woman may have been crossing the tracks with a companion when a Burlington Northern Santa Fe train hit her. She died at the scene, McClain said. source

Woman killed by train in Leucadia
Saturday, March 8, 2008

LEUCADIA----A woman died after she was hit by a train this morning, authorities said.

Shortly before 11 a.m., a woman stepped in front of a southbound Amtrak train near Leucadia Boulevard and Highway 101, Sheriff's Department Lt. Bill Donahue said. She was pronounced dead at the scene. The sheriff's railroad enforcement team is investigating the case as a suicide, Donahue said. source


  1. It's sad. But even sadder our local government doesn't give a damn about burying the train.

    We need real leaders in this town.

    But hey, we're goin' to have one hell of a fire station - PRIORITIES!

  2. Death, noise, pollution. Bury the fucking train.

  3. This is sad but, having lived here quite a long time, I'm always baffled by people who think that the train is the issue in these cases. If somebody committed suicide by walking out onto I-5, nobody would be complaining about how dangerous the freeway is. Moreover, the train doesn't deviate from it's pathway... it's not going to swerve and hit anybody who can just stay out of that very narrow strip of land. I fully support a grade separation of the train, as Solana Beach so successfully carried out, but in the meantime, it's just naive and nonsensical to blame the train for these deaths. When people do so, it just makes them sound ignorant and illogical.

  4. Oh yeah..... I always hear about people jumping in front of traffic on I5.

    The bottom line is 5 to 10 people a year die from the train running through Leucadia whether self induced or not.

    No matter the cause, the train is a killing machine running right through our town.

    Underground the train and stop the death.

  5. what is that for the year? 4 or 5.

    Lets see

    1. This last one
    2. The lady remembering her step father one year
    3. Father one year earlier
    4. I think there was one other death near riviera about 6 months ago, but I don't remember the specifics.
    5. Any more?

  6. Without or without the cooperation of NCTD Encinitas should begin the planning process for lowering the tracks through Leucadia. Of course it will take years as there is funding to secure and engineering to be done but the need is great and Encinitas should take the lead.

  7. How is it that Solana Beach, a much smaller city by population, was able to achieve grade separation so many years ago, and we haven't? I find it inconceivable that it couldn't have been made to happen here if city hall and the voters had really put our minds to it. We should make it happen NOW! B. Bilbray put in a request for funds to study it, so we need to keep that ball rolling.
    And, yes, it's true that people are killed by the train, but like the post above said, train fatalities receive disproportionate attention, similar to airplane fatalities. Hundreds of people die each day in car crashes, and we just accept that as normal. But when the occasional airplane goes down it's front page news, similar to the train. Maybe people are just suckers for sensationalist headlines, or situations in which many people die all at once instead of the slow, steady plodding of highway crashes, etc. And the train? If one person a week was killed by the train in all of San Diego County that would be 52 people a year. Check the stats for road fatalities in San Diego County, just so far this calendar year. So, in response to the post above that referred to the train as a "killing machine" I would just say, "Chill out, you Drama Queen. And make some real change happen instead of fear-mongering about the most collision-avoidable mode of transportation around here." Killing machine... my Lord! Hyperbole breaking out all over the blog.

  8. They should attach a big soft air bag on the front of the train so people just bounce off.

  9. I hate that killing machine. It should be underground like solana beach.

  10. Jerome Stocks says the tracks will not be fenced. NCTD has never voted for that. How can he say that? He is full of crap because he does not want an opposition to form and an opposition will not form if everyone thinks the tracks will not be fenced.

    Jerome's manipulation.

  11. anon 10:46,

    in recent times people have committed suicide by jumping on to the freeway and a while back a guy stuck his head under a semitruck tire of a truck stopped at a red light. That was on El Camino.

    Putting yourself in the way of a heavy moving object appears to be an attractive way to kill yourself. Maybe we should be happy the train is there, because a lot of people decide to go suicidal in a way that makes cops draw their weapons.

  12. Death by train would be reduced significantly if this country had a mental health system -- the largest treater of mental disorders is the criminal system. Pathetic.

  13. Re/ 8:28

    A lot of people don't realize this but one of our presidents saved 10,000 lives per year for 20 years just by lowering the speed limit to 55mph from sea to shining sea. More recently the law changed back. Most people now prefer 70mph in lieu of the higher death risk. Interesting priorities.

  14. Anonymous 11:57 mentions that perhaps we would have less suicides if this country had a better mental health system. The poster then goes on to say that jails are our form of mental health.
    Unfortunately, it is against the law to even give individual psychotherapy to prisoners. We can torture, interrogate, but we are not allowed to do any form of psychotherapy. Once a week I get solicitations from almost all of the jails and prisons in California asking me to join their team. One of my friends did this and she got so sick of it she quit. It is a sad situation. Mental health professionals, like myself, have continually been given decreases in pay by insurance companies, and many people have no health insurance at all. I do quite a bit of pro bono work, slide my scale, etc. however, I too have to make a living. Over the years many people, including my grandfather, have used the trains to commit suicide. I don't blame the trains, I blame the lack of universal healthcare for ALL of our citizens. The elderly have it with Medicare, which really is socialized medicine. So why not the rest of us? I am all for doing what we can to minimalize the train effect on our community, however, it will not stop anyone who wants to take their own life.

  15. This just in... Woman killed on I-805 (see link below). Let's get those killing machines off the roads!

  16. I always wonder why the sheriffs and EMS respond with sirens and such for these suicides, these people are dead!! You get hit by a train going 70+ MPH and you are going to die!! Seems to me they should just save gas and get there when they get there!!!

  17. Freeways are highly separated (usually by grade as well as fencing) from streets at the surface level.


    Also - While not life or death, Asthma is certainly a health issue. Fugitive dust, {including, but
    not limited to: ... movement of vehicles on
    Unpaved Roads.) Is also a big problem especially in summer.

    Burying and covering the track would greatly reduce such pollution in Leucadia.

    Give us the tunnel that Del Mar did not want.

  18. This might sound really harsh but this is such a selfish way to commit suicide. There has got to be a better way, killing yourself in this manner involves so many other people.
    When I sit there in my living room and I hear a siren and then another and they don't stop for 30 minutes I know it happened again- someone got hit by the train.


Thank you for posting on the Leucadia Blog.
There is nothing more powerful on this Earth than an anonymous opinion on the Internet.
Have at it!!!