The Latest: Police unsure why car was between crossing gates

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NEW IBERIA, La. (AP) — The Latest on a fatal car-train wreck in Louisiana (all times local):

11:15 a.m.

Louisiana State Police say investigators don't yet know how a car with six occupants wound up in the path of an Amtrak train. The wreck killed the 70-year-old driver and two 12-year-old girls, and police say a 49-year-old man and two 12-year-old boys are in critical condition.

Master Trooper Brooks David (DAH-veed) said in an email Wednesday that the south Louisiana crossing had working gates. He says investigators don't know whether Phyllis Leblanc drove around a gate or her 2006 Ford Taurus got stuck after the gates went down.

He says all six occupants were from New Iberia, about 115 miles west of New Orleans.

Amtrak spokesman Mike Tolbert says the crash about 6 p.m. Tuesday in New Iberia did not hurt anybody on the train, which was carrying 119 passengers from Los Angeles to New Orleans.


10:25 a.m.

Louisiana State Police say a 70-year-old woman and two 12-year-old girls were killed when a passenger train hit their car, which was stopped on the tracks in south Louisiana about 115 miles west of New Orleans.

Master Trooper Brooks David (DAH-veed) identifies the dead as Jayla Daigle, Trinity Schmidt, and driver Phyllis Leblanc.

He said in emails Wednesday that two 12-year-old boys and another passenger — 49-year-old Steve Leblanc — in the car also were critically injured. David says he doesn't know whether the Leblancs are related.

The train hit their Ford Taurus about 6 p.m. Tuesday in New Iberia, hometown of the three who died and the three who were injured.

Amtrak spokesman Mike Tolbert says nobody on the Sunset Limited was hurt. He says the train from Los Angeles to New Orleans was carrying 119 passengers.


This item has been corrected in the fourth paragraph to show that three died and there were injured; six did not die.


8 a.m.

Louisiana State Police say three people were killed when a car and an Amtrak passenger train crashed.

Master Trooper Brooks David (DAH-veed) says three others were taken to hospitals Tuesday, but the extent of their injuries was not immediately known.

David says all of the dead and injured were in the car. No one was injured on the train.

The crash happened shortly before 6 p.m. in Iberia Parish.

Amtrak spokesman Mike Tolbert says the Sunset Limited train was en route from Los Angeles to New Orleans when it hit a vehicle that was on the tracks at a crossing. There were 119 passengers on the train, and Tolbert says no passengers or crew were hurt.

The train resumed its trip about 8:45 p.m.

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