By Jack King
A Clovis man was at Covenant Hospital in Lubbock on Monday after ramming his truck into a train just off U.S. Highway 60-84 between Clovis and Texico, officials said.
His condition was unknown at press time.
Derek Glidewell, 41, was westbound on U.S. 60-84 when the wreck occurred at 9 a.m. Monday near Dent & Co. east of Clovis.
His truck left its lane, crossed the median and the highway’s eastbound lanes, crossed the soft shoulder on the highway’s south side, went through a fence and struck a train on the Burlington Northern Santa Fe tracks, said New Mexico State Police Lt. Rick Durham.
Durham said Monday the incident was still under investigation and a cause had not been determined.
Glidewell was taken by ambulance to Clovis’ Plains Regional Medical Center, then flown to Covenant Hospital in Lubbock, where he was still in the emergency room and his condition was listed as “undetermined” Monday afternoon, according to a Covenant Hospital spokeswoman.
Melanie Burger, Glidewell’s cousin, said Monday that Glidewell’s parents, J.D. and Betty Glidewell and sister, Debbie Campbell, all of Clovis, were in route to Lubbock on Monday.
Burger said a witness saw Glidewell climb from his truck at the scene and that Glidewell showed no visible signs of injury at Plains Regional Hospital. Also, hospital officials said they found no traces of alcohol in his blood, according to Burger.
“Physically he appears fine,” she said.
However, personnel at Plains Regional sedated Glidewell to keep him from moving around, in case of hidden injuries, she said.
Burger said the family knew of no reason for the crash.
“It’s such a shock. There’s no apparent reason. So they think it was something medical, like a heart attack or a seizure,” she said.
Burlington Northern spokeswoman Lena Kent said Glidewell’s truck went across one set of tracks and hit a train on a second set. The train involved was westbound from Kansas City, Kan., to Belen, but was not moving at the time, she said.
Two freight cars were damaged in the collision and were taken out of the train at Clovis for repairs, she added.