An Illinois teen walking on public transit train tracks in the Chicago area was electrocuted after she fell, officials say.
Samantha Cerrone, a 16-year-old from Winnetka, ventured onto the Chicago Transit Authority tracks in Evanston with a friend who was sleeping over early Wednesday morning, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. Then she stumbled onto the third rail, the newspaper reported.
The third rail is electrified with 600 volts used to move trains, a level of electricity that’s “almost always lethal,” according to the CTA.
Samantha’s friend attempted to pull her from the tracks and suffered burn injuries requiring hospitalization, WLS reported.
Samantha was pronounced dead shortly after, the news outlet reported.
Evanston police Cmdr. Ryan Glew told WBBM that Samantha and her friend entered the tracks at an area that was not elevated.
She was a sophomore at New Trier High School and a member of a New Trier Aquatics swim team.
“It is with a heavy heart that I share the news that one of our students, sophomore Samantha Cerrone, has passed away following a tragic accident,” New Trier Winnetka Campus Principal Denise Dubravec wrote in an email to students and employees, the Sun-Times reported. “Our thoughts, prayers, and love go out to her parents and all of her friends and family during this extraordinarily difficult time.”
In an Instagram post, New Trier Aquatics described Samantha as a “reserved and determined young woman” who was “often seen cheering at the end of the lane for her teammates.”
“Sam was supportive, kind and compassionate. She had a quirky sense of humor that reflected in her unique fashion sense and a strong love for her friends,” the team said on Instagram. “Her shy but bright smile every time she went a best time or achieved a goal in the pool was at once endearing and inspiring in its subtle way. It is without question we will miss her in and out of the pool.”