Two people escaped their 1990 BMW seconds before a freight train slammed into it Monday night at a railroad crossing in Summerland.
At around 10:40 p.m. 24-year-old Johann Berlin of Carmel and 23-year-old Julia Barbosa of Santa Barbara were driving on Lookout Drive to find a place to look at the ocean. When they noticed that Lookout Park was closed, Berlin tried to make a U-turn while on a railroad crossing. While doing so, the front tires got stuck in the gravel and the car would not move.
According to the California Highway Patrol, the track warning lights began to flash, the bells started to ring and the sound of an approaching train became very loud. Berlin and Barbosa exited the vehicle and ran toward Wallace Avenue.
A southbound freight train, which was traveling at approximately 35 to 40 miles per hour, applied its emergency brakes but could not stop in time. The train collided with the car and dragged it for a quarter of a mile.
Although no one was injured and there was no damage to the train, the BMW had to be removed using a tow truck.