Debris came crashing down from a railroad trestle in Colonial Heights, Va., onto a C4 Corvette that had stalled out in flood waters caused when nearly two inches of rain fell in an hour and a half on the Fourth of July.
But it could have been much worse.
The nail-laden boards from a walkway next to the railroad bridge at The Boulevard suddenly rained down on the car when a train passed overhead, most of the debris narrowly missing a 28-year veteran tow truck driver in the process.
Watch this dramatic video of the scene captured by WTVR CBS 6 Senior Reporter Wayne Covil.
“I definitely know that God was with me,” Christy Palmer Archileti, owner of Palmer’s Towing, told Covill afterwards.
Archileti had stopped to hook up her tow truck in an attempt to save the Corvette and can be seen in the water, almost sitting down on the road while trying to connect a chain to the axle, when the debris crashed down near her.
“The next thing I know, debris just started falling everywhere,” Archileti said.
“I didn’t know if the train was coming down or the trestle was coming apart, I was just trying to get out of the way,” she said.
Fortunately, the majority of the debris hit the Corvette’s hood and windshield, but some of it did strike Archileti’s left arm.
She told the reporter that she is “still shaky” after the near disaster.
CSX released this statement:
“Tuesday evening CSX was notified about debris falling from the rail bridge that crosses The Boulevard in Colonial Heights after heavy rainfall caused some localized flooding. Our local bridge inspectors responded immediately to examine the bridge, and they determined that the debris came from a wooden walkway adjacent to the tracks. While the walkway is now closed, the rail bridge is structurally sound and safe for normal train operations. CSX is working with local police to schedule a time to close a portion of The Boulevard for crews to safely remove the rest of the walkway. We expect this work to be scheduled as soon as possible.”
Locals say they have seen flooding at The Boulevard for years. The road was closed for a short time after the incident.
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