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Trucker Dies, Train Passengers Hurt In Crash

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MOTLEY, Minn. (AP) — A trucker died and several passengers were injured when a semi collided with an Amtrak train in central Minnesota.

Donald Ray Hedlund Sr., 57, of Bemidji, failed to stop his tractor-trailer at a railroad crossing near Motley about 2:30 p.m. Friday, the Todd County sheriff’s office said. His truck was hit by an eastbound Empire Builder train traveling from Seattle to Chicago. Hedlund died at the scene.

Two of the 181 passengers were taken to a hospital in Staples with injuries that were not life-threatening. Amtrak spokeswoman Christina Lee told the Star Tribune of Minneapolis that one person returned to the train, while the other remained at the hospital.

Several other passengers and four train workers reported minor injuries but were not hospitalized.

The train fell behind schedule by about seven hours while it was out of service for repairs, Lee said, but no passengers sought alternative transportation.

Lee said the crossing is marked with a sign but does not have warning lights or crossing arms.

Todd County Deputy Don Asmus said road conditions were not a leading factor in the crash.

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