Woman, Children Safe After Train Smashes SUV

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SCRANTON -- A mom from Scranton and her two children are recovering from an early morning crash that could have ended tragically when the woman's car flipped and landed in the path of an oncoming train.

Caroline Dowdy-Datilus of Scranton and her two children were standing unscathed on the highway when a Canadian-Pacific freight train collided with the their SUV only minutes after it landed on the tracks.

Fabian Rodriguez and his friends from Carbondale said it felt much faster, though. They were travelling in the opposite direction on the North Scranton Expressway when Caroline's SUV went off the road.

"I thought they were dead, actually seeing the way the car flipped I thought they were dead. And then when I actually heard the kids screaming "Help me, help me!" I freaked out and did what I had to do," Rodriguez said.

Rodriguez, Kaitlin Biglin, and John Kraynik pried the crunched car doors off and helped Caroline, her 8-year-old son, and 5-year-old daughter escape.

It seemed, for a few seconds, that the scary part was over. Until the train came.

"It was loud, everyone was screaming, it was a scary moment," Biglin said.

"They started honking the horn and we saw the light coming at us, we all started yelling "Train!" So, we ran to the road and as the we got to the road the train clipped the car that was on the tracks and shot it back down into the ditch," Kraynik added.

The three friends and the family of three stood and watched what happened in shock. Police showed up seconds later.

But, these friends can't help but think they were driving past at the exact moment they should have been.

"I think it was a meant to be moment, that we were there on purpose because after we got there no cars passed by until after the cops go there. I feel good, I feel blessed," Rodriguez said.

Caroline Dowdy-Datilus said she and her children are doing just fine, and she's very thankful to the passersby that most likely saved their lives.