A man died at a Wichita hospital Tuesday afternoon a couple hours after he apparently stepped in front of a train and was struck at a crossing at 17th Street and Santa Fe, police said.
The man had been taken in “very critical condition” to Via Christi Hospital on St. Francis, said Wichita police Sgt. Chris McAuliffe. He apparently walked in front of the train around 11:15 a.m. Tuesday. The crossing is just east of 17th and North Broadway.
Police are trying to verify the man’s identity and notify his family and expect to release information about him at the regular briefing for reporters Wednesday morning.
The northbound BNSF train, which had 56 to 58 cars traveling behind several engines, sounded its horn and tried to alert the man who was struck, but the train couldn’t stop in time, McAuliffe said.
Right after the collision, a man flagged down a police officer traveling nearby and said he heard a thud and then saw the injured man lying on the ground, McAuliffe said. It appeared that the man had been struck on the south side of 17th and ended up on the north side at the railroad crossing.
The injured man appeared to be 40 to 50 years old.
McAuliffe said it was too early in the investigation to say what the man’s intentions were when he was struck by the train.