On Monday, January 6, 2020 at approximately 5:30 p.m., the Santa Ana Police Department (SAPD) began receiving several calls of a train versus vehicle collision at the railroad crossing on Grand Avenue just north of Hunter Avenue.
Just after the collision occurred, an SAPD Officer headed south on Grand Avenue came across the collision scene and requested Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA) personnel. OCFA personnel responded to the scene and ultimately pronounced the driver and sole occupant of the vehicle, Juan Jose Espinoza Padilla (61) Santa Ana, deceased.
A large dog was found injured inside the occupant compartment of the vehicle and was transported to a nearby veterinarian for treatment.
The initial investigation has revealed the Metrolink train, occupied by 3 employees and 219 passengers, was headed to the Santa Ana train station from Irvine. The two sets of train tracks intersect Grand Avenue in a northwesterly to southeasterly direction. As the train was headed in a northwesterly direction it collided with a white Toyota sedan that was headed north on Grand Avenue in stop and go traffic. The vehicle was broadsided on its passenger side and pushed over 600’ down the tracks before the train came to a stop.
The Santa Ana Police Department’s Collision Investigations Unit (CIU) responded to the scene and handled the investigation. Anyone possibly having information about this collision are asked to contact Corporal Danny Carrillo at (714) 245-8346.