ROOSEVELT — A 47-year-old Bend, Ore.-area hunter died early Friday after being struck by an Amtrak train near Crow Butte Park.
Steven Ray Allison and two friends from Kennewick planned a day of hunting along the Columbia River about 10 miles east of Roosevelt, said Benton County Sheriff's Sgt. Bob Brockman.
The trio parked off Highway 14 just after 6:30 a.m., and Allison took off walking with a dog toward the river.
Allison's hunting companions, Jeffrey Damron and Dirk Elsner of Kennewick, still were at the car getting their gear together when the train approached the area. The tracks are between the highway and the river, with sagebrush in between.
Benton County Coroner John Hansens said it is not clear what happened, but once the train passed, the dog returned to the car and there was no sign of Allison.
"They thought the train missed him, but when they went looking they found (him) about 100 feet down the tracks," Hansens said.
Marc Magliari, spokesman for Amtrak, said the westbound train with one locomotive and four cars was 66 miles outside of Pasco heading toward Portland when it struck Allison.
The train was delayed almost three hours at the scene while law enforcement officers and the coroner investigated, Magliari said.
The train then continued to Wishram, where a new crew took over for the remaining trip to Portland, he said.
The area around the accident site is generally flat with the tracks running through it, Hansens said.
Allison, who lived in Powell Butte, Ore., came to the Tri-Cities during Thanksgiving to visit friends, Hansens said.