Police: Car with kids inside tried to beat train, collided with it

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Officials say a motorist with two children in his car drove around a line of stopped vehicles and into the path of an Amtrak train in Maine.

Police say the 56-year-old driver, Derso Mekonen, was injured in the Friday morning crash in Portland and was taken to a hospital. The children, ages 5 and 9, were not harmed.

Portland Police Lt. Robert Martin said video footage from a nearby gas station captured the car going around vehicles, maneuvering under a crossing gate and stopping just before the impact, which smashed the car’s front end and spun it around.

The Northern New England Passenger Rail Service says the train’s speed limit at the intersection is 30 mph. Director Patricia Quinn said there are more trains crossing during rush hour because of a recently expanded schedule.

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