09-27-2005, 08:09 AM #1Former Member
- Join Date
- Aug 2003
- In heels
Passing Freight Trains Disrupt Marathon
EAST MOLINE, Ill. (AP) -- Passing freight trains disrupted the 2005 Quad Cities Marathon, prompting a race organizer to drive a pace truck into the path of an approaching locomotive.
After runners were forced to stop and wait as two trains made their way through East Moline on Sunday, Joe Moreno sped over to an intersection near the 22-mile marker and parked his truck on the railroad tracks, blocking a third train from passing.
"I don't know how fast it was coming, but you could hear it coming from a distance. It was blowing its horn," Moreno said Monday.
The train stopped less than a block away from Moreno's truck.
Moreno says he then sat in the vehicle with the doors locked for nearly 1 1/2 hours as several hundred runners crossed the tracks. A railroad employee tried to get Moreno to move his truck, but it wasn't until police arrived that the former East Moline mayor agreed to move the vehicle.
"With every minute, I was buying time for the runners," Moreno said.
Richard Stoeckly, vice president and chief operating officer of the Iowa Interstate Railroad Co., said the disruptions were the result of a "breakdown in communication" between race organizers and the company.
The disruptions did not affect the marathon's elite runners, Moreno said, adding that a passing train also interrupted the marathon in 1999.