Haywood Waller says he was trying to make a right turn onto Brambleton Avenue from Second Street when his van was hit by a light rail train.
“The whole truck spun around one time. So then I hit the seat belt and got out and I felt real dizzy,” says Waller.
He stated that around 5 p.m., he pulled up and stopped at the white line. The traffic light on Brambleton was green and there was no sign of a train coming.
When he saw a break in traffic, Waller admits he pulled past the white line up to the tracks and looked to his right. Waller says that a big white sign and green electrical box was obstructing his view.
“If I had looked around, it probably wouldn’t have happened. But I looked dead at the boxes, not thinking I eased up a little to get out of the way,” says Waller.
But it was too late; Waller’s van crossed into the path of the train, and they collided.
Luckily, no one was hurt. The city says the intersection meets all the safety requirements and it’s up to the driver to follow the rules.
“It was the automobile driver that didn’t pay attention to the stop lights or signs so HRT wont plan any changes, stated Phillip Shuchet, HRT president.
“I still think its fair,” says Waller. “If I was more cautious, this wouldn’t have happened. Some of it’s got to be my fault. I wasn’t as cautious as I should have been.”
But NewsChannel 3 caught other drivers today making the same mistake.
While Waller does agree with his charge of failure to obey a traffic signal, he hopes that other drivers will learn from his mistake.
He says this accident won’t stop him from taking a ride on the Tide himself.
“I cant let that stop progress,” says Waller. “Me and my whole family are going to ride it. We’ve been planning on it anyway, we are definitely going to ride it.”