Train versus car: teens make it out alive, but officials are calling for changes

(WISH Photo)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A carload of teens slammed into a moving train Thursday morning. Police said they were playing a game of chicken. They walked out of the incident alive.

It happened on Epler Avenue, near Madison Avenue on the city’s south side.

It’s a story of train versus car. Police say four teens may have been under the influence of drugs when they crashed their vehicle into a train.

Joseph Marsden walks across the tracks on his way to and from work.

“It’s a very stupid thing. I mean you’re risking your life. You know? One wrong move, like these kids made, and look what happened. They actually are very fortunate. All lived and that rarely happens,” said Marsden.

Police said the teens were trying to beat the train in a game of chicken.

“My biggest fear with this rail coming through faster, more kids are going to play chicken with the trains,” said Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers.

Myers is concerned about a rail project that’ll allow trains to go faster, from 25 miles per hour to almost 50. It’ll also allow heavier trains to pass through as well as increase train traffic from Indianapolis to Louisville.

“We need crossing arms. We need to eliminate the possibility of playing chicken with that train,” said Myers.

According to Myers, crossing arms cost around $200,000 each. Indiana has a $3 million allowance to spend on all crossings in the entire state. Myers is working with lawmakers to come up with a solution.

“What’s going to happen next? How many other kids are going to be maimed and killed?” asked Myers.

As the mayor works on a solution, Marsden is using this as an opportunity to send out a message.

“Be careful. Train versus car? You’re going to lose every time,” said Marsden.

According to police, one teen was transported to Sidney & Lois Eskenazi Hospital in serious condition. Two others were taken as a safety precaution and the fourth teen was checked out on the scene. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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