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April 2014


Pewaukee man unaware he was struck by train

Village of Pewaukee - A 31-year-old Village of Pewaukee man was so intoxicated early Sunday morning that he did not know he had been hit by a freight train, according to police, even though he suffered a broken arm and had a major injury to his buttocks.

Thomas J. Boersma, who has passed out on the Canadian Pacific railroad tracks in the village in the past, village police said, apparently did so again at about 3:30 a.m.

The conductor of an eastbound freight train pulling 76 cars told police he saw something on the north rail, and as the train approached the object the conductor realized it was a person on the gravel area with the person's back resting against the rail, according to the police report.

The conductor informed the engineer, who immediately began to brake. The conductor said the person, Boersma, had his back to the train and did not move and never turned around as the train approached. The train hit Boersma about three-tenths of a mile east of Forest Grove Drive, the report said.

When the train was able to stop, the conductor and engineer began to search for Boersma but could not find him. Police eventually found Boersma, who was wearing camouflage, which made him difficult to find, the report said.

Boersma was conscious and "unaware he had been hit by a train," the report said.

A village officer saw Boersma had suffered a severe injury to his left buttocks, as well as a broken left arm.

Before the Pewaukee Fire Department arrived at the scene, Boersma was combative and verbally abusive, and two Waukesha County Sheriff's Department deputies had to help restrain him, according to police.

Boersma refused medical attention but was taken to Waukesha Memorial Hospital where he remained "agitated and combative," the report said.

Due to his condition, police were unable to give Boersma a preliminary breath test. However, an empty beer bottle was found near the scene as well as five full bottles of beer in Boersma's backpack, the report said.

Police noted that Boersma, who lives at 362 Willow Grove Drive, which is near the railroad tracks, walks on the tracks on a regular basis. He has been previously found intoxicated and passed out on the tracks, the report said.

Police cited Boersma for trespassing on railroad property.

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