Woman Dead After Train Crashes Into Car in Wilmington

The woman in the car, identified as Roberta Sausville, 68, of Wilmington, was pronounced dead on scene

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A woman was killed Friday when an inbound train collided with her car on the tracks near the North Wilmington commuter rail station in Wilmington, Massachusetts, officials said.

According to MBTA Transit Police Supt. Richard Sullivan, the Boston-bound train collided with the woman's car near the railroad crossing just before 6 p.m. on Middlesex Avenue.

The woman in the car, identified as Roberta Sausville, 68, of Wilmington, was pronounced dead on scene; she was the only person inside the vehicle.

According to officials, preliminary investigation suggests that Sausville's car was eastbound on Middlesex Avenue in Wilmington when an Inbound Haverhill Line train struck the driver's side of the car near the North Wilmington MBTA Station.

Sausville was pronounced dead on the scene.

No one on the train was hurt, Sullivan said, and the passengers were taken away by bus.

Those who were onboard the train say there was little warning before the train slammed into the small car.

"It was like a pop bang type of sound, I never heard anything like it honestly," Joe Mirabella said.

According to Mirabella, as soon as the train hit the car, people jumped out of their own cars and started running towards the woman's car -- several yards down the tracks -- to see if they could help.

Those on the train could only watch.

"We were on the train, the lights went off, and the train started coming to a stop," one man said. "A couple of seconds later, a bunch of the workers came on, like screaming and swearing, 'What just happened?"

Those who live and work in the area were shocked by what happened.

"I have a pit in my stomach right now, actually, yeah, it is sad," one woman shared.

Police remained on scene until late Friday night and had warned the investigation could take some time. Significant delays for Haverhill Line trains operating in both directions were expected while investigators were on scene for nearly six hours.

Transit police, the district attorney's office and state troopers are all investigating what led up to the crash.

"On the cause of the accident, we have to allow the investigators a meaningful opportunity to look into it to determine the exact cause," Sullivan said.

It wasn't immediately clear why or how the woman's car was on the tracks at the time the train was crossing through. Part of the investigation will look at whether or not the signal's crossing arm was working at the time of the crash.

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