VIDEO: Car Lifted Off Railroad Tracks After Driver Stranded East of Mount Prospect Rd, Des Plaines

Difficult car removal using a JCB Telehandler construction vehicle from the Metra Union Pacific Northwest Line railroad tracks in Des Plaines near Mount Prospect Road. YouTube Tips ⓘ

Metra police and police, firefighters and paramedics from Des Plaines responded about 7:01 p.m. Friday, October 29, 2021 to a report of a vehicle stuck on the tracks near 485 Northwest Highway in Des Plaines. The vehicle was actually stranded on the tracks near the former Lattof YMCA between the Cumberland train station and Mount Prospect Road.




Initially it was unclear whether the car was hit or grazed by a passing Metra train. The driver was out of the vehicle when firefighters arrived on the scene. The driver of the passenger sedan was possibly impaired or DUI impaired, driving 1200 feet along the railroad tracks east of Mount Prospect Road.

A Metra Alert UP-NW stated that inbound and outbound train movement was halted near Mount Prospect for a vehicle on the tracks. Extensive delays were anticipated. At least some trains were passing the scene by 9:00 p.m., and at 10:19 p.m. Metra tweeted that inbound and outbound trains were on the move with possible delays.

Hillside Towing arrived by about 7:20 p.m. and the crew on scene assessed that they could not tow the vehicle with routine equipment. Hillside assigned at least two Heavy Rescue towing vehicles to the scene — a rotator crane recovery vehicle and a JCB Telehandler construction vehicle with a telescopic boom with a long horizontal range.

Hillside Towing used the JCB Telehandler to lift the vehicle off the railroad tracks and place it on Northwest Highway. Hillside also assigned their rotator crane recovery truck to the scene, and it was needed to help pull the JCB Telehandler over the curb while it was transferring the passenger sedan. The JCB Telehandler’s large tires were spinning in a ditch near the south side curb of Northwest Highway when the operator attempted to get off the railroad embankment, over the curb, and onto Northwest Highway. The rotator crane feature wasn’t needed, but a chain connected from the rotator crane recovery truck’s rear frame or bumper to the JCB Telehandler helped pull the JCB Telehandler over the curb.

Once the passenger sedan was placed on Northwest Highway, the vehicle was towed away by a routine flatbed tow by about 10:00 p.m.




Car lifted off railroad tracks by Hillside Towing using JCB Telehandler construction east of Mount Prospect Road
Car lifted off railroad tracks by Hillside Towing using JCB Telehandler construction east of Mount Prospect Road.
Metra police on the scene after a passenger sedan was lifted of the UP NW line tracks about 1200 feet east of Mount Prospect Road in Des Plaines
Metra police on the scene after a passenger sedan was lifted of the UP NW line tracks about 1200 feet east of Mount Prospect Road in Des Plaines.

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The information in this article is an early report published before any summary information was confirmed or released by police or fire authorities.

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This incident occurred near the scene of a tragic head-on DUI crash on Northwest Highway on February 16, 2017 that killed four people.

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