11-year-old girl fatally struck by train, conductor says she was looking at phone

POLK COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) - For the family of Yazmin White, the new year is now filled with heartache.

The family is heartbroken after losing the life of their 11-year-old little girl Wednesday afternoon, after she was hit by an Amtrak train just before 5 p.m.

The child was wearing her earphones and looking down at her cell phone while crossing the tracks, according to Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.

The preliminary information in the case indicates that the child was leaving Carmelita's Food Mart, located at 2670 Highway 1792.

That would be the last place she would be seeing alive.

Shortly after, she was hit by the passenger train traveling toward Winter Haven at 68 mph.

The conductor told investigators that he blew the horn repeatedly and tried to stop the train, applying the brakes.

The little girl did not indicate in any way that she was aware of the train approaching her rapidly.

Sheriff Judd responded to the scene and issued this statement:

"We send our deepest condolences to Yazmin's family. This is a tragedy a parent or family should never have to go through. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers."


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