From the Ottawa Citizen 23 April 1984|
Mircle saves motorist in Car-train collision
John Picard's Easter miracle was a simple walk away from a car-train collision that left his vehicle a twisted mess Sunday.
Picard was returning home from dropping his mother off after a family dinner when his car was broadsided by a Montreal-bound passenger train at a rural crossing in Cumberland Township.
"The only thing I remember is that I was on the tracks and I saw this big thing coming at me," Picard said of the 5:20 p.m. accident.
"There was no engine noise, or whistle or anything."
The 39-year-old civilian employee of CFB Uplands suffered a broken hand, sore ribs and bruises and said Sunday night he had "a shiner and quite a headache."
"But I walked away from it.
"It was Easter Sunday and I can thank God, He saved my life."
Picard blacked out when his car was struck. The OPP officer investigating the accident said the car was flipped and dragged 36 metres down the tracks.
"There's not much left of the vehicle," said Rockland OPP Const. Mike Brehmer. "The driver's compartment is the only thing left intact."
Embrun Fire Chief Maurice Gregoire was called to the accident scene and said it was "a miracle" Picard lived.
"The licence plate was 100 feet away from the bumper."
Picard, who lives outside Casselman with his wife and sons aged eight and six, was taken to hospital in Ottawa, but released Sunday night.
The train had minor damage and CN Police and the OPP are investigating the accident.
The level crossing, on Dunning Road in Cumberland Township, is marked by a sign, but has no signal light.