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LIRR: Ronkonkoma service on, close after train hits minivan

The Long Island Rail Road says a vehicle went around down crossing gates in Hicksville when it was struck.

Police investigate at New South Road in Hicksville,

Police investigate at New South Road in Hicksville, where an LIRR train struck a minivan that was crossing the tracks on Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2017. Photo Credit: Jim Staubitser

A motorist in a minivan was critically injured after driving around closed railroad gates and onto the tracks in Hicksville on Tuesday, Long Island Rail Road officials said.

The gates were down and warning lights were flashing when the train crashed into the minivan about 12:20 p.m. at New South Road, the second crossing west of the Bethpage train station, officials said.

No passengers aboard the westbound train, due to arrive at Penn Station at 1:15 p.m., were injured, the LIRR said.

The collision forced the railroad to suspend service in both directions for about two hours as work crews made repairs.

The driver, whose identity was not released, was taken to the Nassau University Medical Center in critical condition, an LIRR spokesman said.

Safety devices at the crossing, including one of the gate arms and a pole with flashing warning lights, were knocked to the ground in the accident.

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