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Alcohol listed as factor in train death

May. 14, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

HUNTINGTON -- Investigators believe alcohol was a contributing factor in the death of a pedestrian who was struck by a train Sunday.

The Huntington Police Department identified the deceased as Kevin Andrew Tierney, 55, of Huntington. The accident happened about 1:12 a.m. Sunday at 5th Street West just north of 8th Avenue.

Huntington Police Lt. John Williams said Tierney left the nearby Paddock Bar with his girlfriend. Both walked across the nearby railroad from south to north when he was hit. The train was traveling 30 miles per hour at the time.

The woman, who was not injured, told officers they decided to cross the tracks as opposed to walk through a nearby pedestrian tunnel, Williams said.

They were concerned the pedestrian underpass was too dark, despite Williams' report that it was lighted when he arrived.

The underpass is maintained by the city's Public Works Department, according to Director David Hagley. He said lights were replaced more than two weeks ago as crews changed out equipment.

Hagley said the tunnel is difficult to maintain due, in part, to light vehicle traffic in the area. Debris and littering are frequent occurrences, while people also have been known to break lights in the tunnel.

The lights operate in a dusk-to-dawn fashion. Hagley said natural daylight typically provides enough light for people to walk through.

The incident is under investigation by city and CSX police.

Tierney was a veteran and an active member of American Legion Post 16. He was also a member of the St. Joseph Catholic Church.

Follow Curtis Johnson at Facebook.com/curtisjohnsonHD and via Twitter @curtisjohnsonHD.

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