Gothenburg man injured after pickup-train collision on Saturday

An eastbound Union Pacific coal train struck a Toyota pickup during the morning of Saturday, June 27.

GOTHENBURG — A Gothenburg man was injured after a pickup-train collision occurred on Saturday, June 27.

Around 8:43 a.m. the Dawson County Sheriff’s Office was dispatched to a railroad crossing west of Gothenburg.

An eastbound Union Pacific coal train carrying 147 cars struck a 2017 Toyota Tacoma at a private crossing two miles west of Gothenburg, said Union Pacific National Media and Nebraska director Raquel Espinoza.

Espinoza said the crossing does feature stop signs and this will play into Union Pacific’s investigation. Horns and whistles were used several times by the Union Pacific crew.

The Toyota was southbound on the tracks when it was struck in the front passenger side by the coal train. The driver, 67-year-old Robert Buddenberg of Gothenburg was transported from the scene by the Gothenburg Volunteer Fire Department to Gothenburg Memorial Hospital, according to Dawson County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Greg Gilg.

Buddenberg was then transported by life flight helicopter to CHI Health Good Samaritan Hospital in Kearney. He suffered broken bones and internal injuries, Gilg said.

It could not be determined if a seatbelt was in use at the time of the accident. The matter is still under investigation by the Dawson County Sheriff’s Office.

Union Pacific asks all drivers to use caution, slow down and look both ways when approaching and crossing railroad tracks.

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