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Butler man dies after being hit by train

September 12, 2013 News Extra

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Investigators are working to determine why 22-year-old Matthew L. Fockler was on the railroad tracks in Butler late Wednesday night, which led to his death.

Fockler of Butler was lying on the tracks near Negley Avenue about 10 p.m. when he was struck and killed by the train, authorities said.

Alcohol may have been a contributing factor, according to investigators. However, Butler police said they have not ruled out the death was a suicide.

The conductor activated the train’s horn and applied the brakes but Fockler did not move and the train was unable to stop in time, police Capt. David Dalcamo said.

Butler County Deputy Coroner Larry Barr pronounced Fockler dead at 10:55 p.m. of multiple injuries.

No autopsy was done but toxicology tests are being performed, Barr said.

Officials for the Canadian National Railway Co. could not be reached for comment this morning.

Police had little information about the three-engine train.

It was southbound coming through Butler while rounding a bend when the conductor saw Fockler on the track, Barr said.

“He hit the horn but there was no reaction (from the victim),” Barr said of the conductor.

Police did not know how fast the train was traveling.

“But the speed was within regulation,” Dalcamo said.

Investigators spoke to Fockler’s family about what happened. Fockler worked for a moving company in Cranberry Township.

His mother said he had gone to work earlier Wednesday and returned home. He left again but relatives apparently did not know where he went, investigators said

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