A 72-year-old woman who died on Wednesday when a Metra train hit a truck in suburban Clarendon Hills was thrown from the train by the force of the impact, officials confirmed Thursday.
At a news conference detailing the latest findings from the crash investigation, National Transportation Safety Board officials confirmed that Christina Lopez was thrown from a train window when she hit a truck that was on the tracks at a level crossing Wednesday morning.
At least four other people were lightly injured, including two passengers, a Metra employee and a train conductor, officials said.
At around 8 a.m. Wednesday, the Metra train on the BNSF line struck a moving truck on the Clarendon Hills tracks.
The truck was sent through the air by the force of the impact and eventually burst into flames.
Authorities say they are still working to determine how fast the train was traveling when it hit the truck. Officials say they believe the train was trying to slow down, but if the train was traveling near its top speed of 70 miles per hour, it could have taken up to a mile to stop.
Authorities are reviewing footage captured by several residents who were near the scene when the truck was hit. Authorities say two occupants of the truck were able to exit the vehicle before the collision and were not injured.
It’s unclear why the truck was on the tracks, and NTSB officials say the detail is “one of the key questions” their investigation will seek to answer.
An investigation is still ongoing and train times are being changed as cleanup efforts continue at the site.