Longtime local lawyer hospitalized after train hits SUV

By Eric Florip, Columbian Transportation & Environment Reporter



Longtime Vancouver attorney Michael Langsdorf was in satisfactory condition at PeaceHealth Medical Center Monday night after an Amtrak train hit his 2005 Lexus SUV. The collision happened at a private crossing west of the Interstate 205 Bridge and south of Southeast Evergreen Highway in east Vancouver.

Langsdorf, 69, was the vehicle’s only occupant, said BNSF Railways spokesman Gus Melonas.

The collision happened at about 5:30 p.m., adjacent to the 10600 block of Southeast Burlington Drive along the Columbia River, and shut down a BNSF line just off of state Highway 14 for about an hour, Melonas said. The closure delayed five freight trains. Investigators didn’t find any damage to the railroad or the crossing, Melonas said.

Melonas said he didn’t know how fast the eastbound Amtrak train was traveling.

The BNSF-owned track is used by about 30 freight trains daily, Melonas said.