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Metra releases video of train nearly striking vehicles in Mokena

Footage from a video released by Metra on Jan. 16 shows a vehicle crossing the tracks just seconds before a train passes through on Nov. 9. | Metra

Footage from a video released by Metra on Jan. 16 shows a vehicle crossing the tracks just seconds before a train passes through on Nov. 9. | Metra

Metra officials Wednesday released a video of a train narrowly missing a police vehicle and two SUVs after a gate malfunctioned last fall in southwest suburban Mokena.

On Nov. 9, inbound Rock Island District Train 506 came close to striking the three vehicles about 8:45 a.m. at 191st Street in the southwest suburb when the crossing gates and lights failed to activate, according to Metra officials and Mokena police.

Mokena Police Officer Peter Stanglewicz — one of the drivers who just barely missed being struck by the train — captured the encounter on his dashcam.

That video was made public in late December and shows Stanglewicz veering off to a quick stop just before reaching the tracks where the train was barreling through at 52 miles per hour, according to Metra.

In a review of the incident released Wednesday, Metra said the problem was caused by an electrical short in the crossing gate.

At the time the gate malfunctioned, a signal maintainer was already nearby addressing a track signal issue that had been improperly signaling conductors to halt at a place they didn’t normally stop, Metra said.

After the near-miss, trains were immediately prevented from going through the intersection without first stopping and having a conductor get off and check the crossing. The signal issue was fixed by 3:40 p.m. that day, Metra said.

Metra released video footage of Train 506, and four other trains that passed through the the 191st Street intersection that morning.