first_imgELMWOOD PARK, Ill. – A commuter train struck several vehicles during the holiday rush hour in suburban Chicago on Wednesday, injuring at least 13 people. The train hit five vehicles at a busy diagonal intersection, setting off a chain reaction that ultimately damaged about a dozen vehicles, said Patrick Waldron, a spokesman for the Metra train service. At least one of the vehicles burst into flames. Metra spokeswoman Judy Pardonnet said at least three people in the vehicles were in critical condition. Waldron said there appeared to be no injuries among passengers aboard the express train, which was headed from Chicago to Antioch, near the Wisconsin border. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBlues bury Kings early with four first-period goals Greg Sandford, 27, didn’t see any flashing lights when he drove across the tracks amid stop-and-go traffic around 5 p.m. He said he was only about five car lengths from the tracks when he saw the crash in his rear view mirror. “The van in front of me stopped short and I stopped short, and 30 seconds later the Metra train just plowed through,” Sandford said. “The train hit maybe six or eight cars, and they hit other cars and they careened into my car.” Elmwood Park is 14 miles northwest of Chicago. The rail crossing cuts through a busy diagonal intersection there, and a street sign beside the tracks reads: “Long crossing. Do not stop on the tracks.” last_img read more