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Pedestrian hit by train in rural Champaign County, one dead

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Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup says 26- year- old Eric Morales died Sunday night when he tried to cross the railroad tracks just North of Thomas Street and North Chestnut Street in Ludlow.

Investigators said Morales lost his footing and fell in front of an oncoming Amtrak train.

An Amtrak spokesman tells Fox Illinois the train was heading from Chicago to Carbondale and had over 170 passengers on board. No one on the train, including crew members, suffered any injuries.

The Champaign County Sheriff's Office is taking this opportunity to remind pedestrians and drivers about railroad crossing safety.

"You never know on a part of the track where there's not an actual crossing,” Champaign County Sheriff’s Office Lieutenant Brian Mennenga said. “You could lose your footing, you could slip and fall. There's obviously, on the pedestrian crossings and vehicle crossings you know, it's level with the tracks so that it makes it an easier transition to cross the tracks."

According to the coroner, no autopsy will be performed, but an inquest may be held at a later date.

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