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In-store semi-train accident | The Daily Standard Stories

Friday, June 17, 2022

No one was injured in a downtown crash

By Leslie Gartrell

Photo by Paige Sutter/The Daily Standard

Local police and firefighters respond to a train and tractor-trailer crash on Main Street in Coldwater at 11:21 a.m. Thursday.

COLD WATER – No injuries were reported after a train collided with a tractor-trailer on Thursday, causing heavy damage to the Mr. Shoppe and a nearby car.

The store will remain open today from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. to serve existing customers for the seven weddings scheduled for this weekend.

Coldwater Police responded to a call of an accident at West Main Street and First Street at 11:21 a.m. Sgt. Kevin Wynk said Thursday.

Kwaku Wiredu, 44, Columbus, was driving a 2019 Alimco tractor-trailer eastbound on West Main Street, according to a Coldwater Police Department news release. Wiredu was stopped in traffic west of the crossing at West Main Street and First Street, Wynk said.

Kent Jones, 54, Fort Recovery, was driving a 1978 General Motors train northeast on the RJ Corman railroad tracks, according to the release.

The train hit the tractor-trailer after Wiredu headed east through the crossing, Wynk said. The trailer was pushed into The Mr. Shoppe, 204 W. Main St., causing extensive damage.

The semi-trailer trailer suffered disabling damage while the train sustained minor damage, the statement said. An unoccupied vehicle on North First Street also sustained functional damage.

Wynk said the accident is the first recorded accident for RJ Corman since he acquired the tracks in the late 1980s or early 1990s. He noted that the lights and signals at the crossing were operating at the time of the accident and that Jones had sounded his horn several times before impact.

Village administrator Eric Thomas said trains typically pass through the village at speeds of between 5 and 10 mph. Fewer than 200 trains pass through the village each year, Thomas said.

Wiredu was cited for not yielding to a crossing, according to the statement.

Photo by Paige Sutter/The Daily Standard

A tractor-trailer accident Thursday in Coldwater destroyed a corner of The Mr. Shoppe men’s store on Main Street. The train is visible through a huge hole in the store’s wall.

Mr Shoppe owner Gary Bruns said he was unloading produce on the east side of the store when he heard a loud boom.

“I heard this big boom and looked to my left and saw a white tractor-trailer coming straight at me,” Bruns said. “Thank God when I heard that big boom, I started running towards the alley (behind the building).”

Two members of Mr Shoppe’s staff and two customers, including a pregnant woman, were in the store at the time of the crash, he said.

Bruns pointed out that the train was moving slowly, saying the tractor-trailer driver probably thought he could cross the crossing in time.

However, traffic was slow and the trailer was partially on the tracks when it was hit by the train, according to Bruns.

Although no injuries were reported, the business owner said a village employee became scared when a clothed mannequin buried under the rubble was briefly mistaken for Bruns.

Photo by Paige Sutter/The Daily Standard

A mannequin lies among the rubble of the Mr. Shoppe in Coldwater, the victim of a collision between a train and a tractor-trailer.

Bruns said he wanted to thank village officials for quickly cleaning up the crash scene and Kevin Schwieterman, who put up signs and secured the building until further repairs could be made.

Bruns added that a friend had suggested holding a “train wreck sale” in light of the accident and said he could hold an annual sale on June 16 to commemorate the incident.

St. Henry’s Police Department, Mercer County Sheriff’s Office, Coldwater Fire Department, Coldwater EMS, Ohio State Highway Patrol Motor Enforcement Carrier Unit, Mercer County EMA, MCERV and the Department of Coldwater Street also helped.

Photo by Paige Sutter/The Daily Standard

The Mr. Shoppe was badly damaged after a tractor-trailer crashed into the building after colliding with a train.