No one was injured Feb. 28 when a 93-year-old man drove his 1998 Buick Century onto the north train platform and then onto the railroad tracks at the Prairie Avenue crossing in Brookfield.
According to Brookfield Police Lt. Edward Petrak, the car was headed south on Prairie Avenue and turned left as he approached the railroad crossing at 7:20 p.m. From there the car headed onto the north train platform and ended up with two wheels on the platform and two on the northernmost set of railroad tracks.
A Brookfield police officer reportedly witnessed what happened and, according to Petrak, immediately had the department’s 911 dispatcher contact the railroad to stop train traffic.
The officer reported that the man, an Ottawa resident who apparently was visiting someone in the area, appeared confused.
“They had a hard time trying to just get him to unlock the doors so they could get him out of the car,” said Petrak, who added that the driver told police he couldn’t see the roadway due to the darkness and drove off the road and onto the railroad right of way.
The man’s car was eventually towed off the tracks. Three trains were delayed because of the incident, according to a Metra spokeswoman. The worst delay was 43 minutes, she said.
Police ticketed the driver for driving on the sidewalk and submitted paperwork to the Illinois Secretary of State asking that the man be required to undergo a driving test to determine whether he can safely operate a vehicle.