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Death of man struck by Amtrak train has been ruled accidental

February 20, 2002|By DARREN SIMON, Staff Writer

The county Coroner's Office is listing the death of a 20-year-old Chino man, who was struck by a Amtrak passenger train Sunday in Glamis, as an accident.

County Coroner Investigator Deputy Gary Hayes said based on evidence uncovered during an autopsy Tuesday, the death appears to be accidental rather than a suicide.

Hayes did not release details about the evidence.

Officials will have a toxicology test done to determine whether the man had alcohol or drugs in his system when he died.

The man, Michael Black, had been in the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area with family and friends for the Presidents Day weekend.

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Authorities said at some point Black laid down on the railroad tracks along Wash Road in the dunes. He was struck about 5:30 a.m. by the Amtrak train, which was heading to Los Angeles.

Authorities have said they are unsure whether Black was conscious when the train approached.

According to reports from the train conductor, Black was lying on the tracks and did not move as the train approached. The conductor said the train's horn was blown to try to gain the man's attention but he did not move.

>> Staff Writer Darren Simon can be reached at 337-4082.

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