Train mooning stunt leads to tragedy
The Livingston County Sheriff has new details in the death of a teenager killed by a train passing through Dalton around 9:07 a.m. on Thursday Aug. 2.
According to Sheriff John York, Kaylie M. Mann, 17, of Dalton was mooning an eastbound Norfolk Southern freight train when she was struck and killed by the locomotive. Train mooning is fad popularized by a number of Internet websites.
Railroad tracks are four feet, 8.5 inches between the inside of the rails, but modern railroad equipment and locomotives overlaps the rails by nearly three feet. Mann was next to the track — not between the rails — when she was struck by the plow mounted on the front of the locomotive, which was traveling at 47 miles an hour. She died instantly.
Mann and a teenage boy had been in a park gazebo next to the track before the accident took place. She reportedly had set out for her house, on the opposite side of the track, as the train approached. Her companion saw the collision.
Trains going through Dalton sound their air horns for two highway crossings. However, when the engineer spotted Mann near the track, he issued a steady warning blast which went unheeded by the victim. The incident was recorded on a video camera mounted to the front of the locomotive.
Sheriff York says the boy is facing a burglary charge related to a break-in incident the were involved earlier that morning. Because the boy is under 18, police are not releasing his name.
An investigation was conducted by Sheriff’s personnel, District Attorney Gregory McCaffery, the New York State Police, and the Nunda Fire Department.
The sheriff’s press release cautions, “The tragedy speaks loud and clear of the dangers of being near railroad tracks. Railroad officials and Sheriff’s investigators warn everyone to refrain from being near rail lines at any time.”
Correction: An earlier story reported the two were walking alongside the track. The most recent police report confirms that only Mann was near the track at the time of the collision.
Editor’s note: I’ve closed comments on this story because an exchange between two readers degenerated into name-calling — of the victim, of the two men in the discussion and of the staff of the LCN. While I don’t mind pointed discussions on this site in general, I don’t think I’d like to leave the door open for people to continue to insult this unfortunate young woman.