By Bob Uphues
Train traffic has been halted on the Burlington Northern-Santa Fe rail line after an outbound Metra express train struck and killed a pedestrian just west of the Longcommon Road grade crossing at about 2:50 p.m. on March 7.
Police Chief Thomas Weitzel said investigators are still trying to identify the victim, who was described as male. Police recovered a backpack on the train platform, which did not contain a photo ID, but did contain a suicide note.
The train's engineer reportedly told police that the victim stepped directly in front of the oncoming train west of Longcommon Road. Metra train engines are equipped with cameras. The train platform is not yet equipped with surveillance cameras.
As of 4:25 p.m., train traffic remained shut down in both directions. A Metra spokesman said she had no idea how long traffic may be suspended. The Cook County Medical Examiner is at the scene.
It's second train-related fatality on the BNSF this week. A 15-year-old boy was killed after being struck by a freight train in Western Springs on the evening of March 5. The medical examiner determined the cause of death in that incident as suicide.
This story will be updated as more details become available.