A group of foreign students in their twenties was hit by a train Saturday evening as they took pictures of the sunset along the Gaviota Coast. Two of the victims suffered moderate to serious injuries and are being treated at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. A third died at the scene.
According to County Fire spokesperson Mike Eliason, the group of four had walked onto the Vista Point trestle north of Refugio State Beach at approximately 6 p.m. when an Amtrak train came around the corner and startled them. The two couples tried to outrun the train, but one female was struck and thrown a distance off the trestle. She died at the scene. Another woman was hit and suffered moderate injuries. She was driven by ambulance to Cottage Hospital. A male victim was also struck and sustained serious injuries to his upper torso and head. He was flown by helicopter to Cottage Hospital’s trauma center. A fourth man escaped injury and, after he was cleared by paramedics at the scene, drove himself to the hospital to be with his friends. The identity of the victims have not been released.
Train lines were temporarily shut down as Sheriff’s officials investigated the incident.