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Person struck and killed by train

 | Published on 10/30/2010


A pedestrian was hit and killed Friday afternoon by a southbound train approaching the Belmont station, leading to widespread delays for several hours during the evening commute, a Caltrain spokeswoman said. 

Train No. 256 hit the individual at about 3:10 p.m., but the circumstances surrounding his death were still not known yesterday evening, spokeswoman Christine Dunn said. 

Delays of up to an hour were reported while trains operated at reduced speeds around the collision site. The trains were expected to be running on time by about 7 p.m., Dunn said.

Caltrain officials said the pedestrian was trespassing on the tracks.

"No matter what the circumstances, any loss of life is regrettable," Dunn said in a statement. "Caltrain is committed to improving safety on the right-of-way through education, engineering and enforcement."

Dunn said the incident was Caltrain's ninth fatality of the year. Five of the deaths were determined to have been suicides, and three are still under investigation, she said.

Transit police deputies, who patrol the Caltrain right-of-way and are trained in crisis intervention, have pulled 11 people from the tracks this year and referred them to treatment, Dunn said. 

In September, Caltrain began installing 250 crisis prevention signs along a 10-mile stretch of track between Menlo Park and Mountain View, according to the agency.

The signs have a hotline number to a local crisis intervention agency and are part of a national study testing how effectively signs prevent suicides on railroad tracks.