A married couple were hit and killed by an Amtrak train at 9:48 a.m. Sunday in Durham, North Carolina. The pair has been identified as Derek Lowe, 38, and his wife, Tina Lowe, 33.
An Amtrak spokesman confirmed that Train 80 left from Charlotte, North Carolina, and was headed toward New York City. The train was carrying 166 passengers, none of whom was injured. The train was at a standstill for nearly three hours while investigators cleared the scene.
Authorities aren’t sure why the couple were on the tracks, though a local man told WTVD-TV in Raleigh-Durham that he often assisted the pair, who possibly lived in a homeless camp across the tracks. He told the news station he had last seen them last week.
"The last encounter I had with the man and woman was they had a grocery cart and they had a few items in it," James Thompson said. "They asked me would I use my truck to go over there because crossing the railroad tracks was so bad, and so hard with the cart."
Thompson claimed he met the pair while collecting scrap metal. "They'll come up to me and want me to give them a little something," he said. "When you see a person that's in dire straits, be kind to them. Don't condemn them. They've got a heart."
Durham sits approximately 25 miles north of Raleigh, North Carolina.
This weekend has proven difficult for Amtrak.
At 7 p.m. Saturday, an Amtrak train struck an unknown pedestrian in Sharon Hill, Pennsylvania, southwest of Philadelphia. The train was headed from New York City to Washington, D.C. The train was delayed for nearly three hours and was carrying 316 passengers. The victim, who hasn’t been identified, was trespassing when he was hit, Amtrak spokesman Mark Magliari said.