A Skokie man died around dawn this morning when his car crashed into the Union Pacific railroad embankment at the east end of Oakton Street in Evanston.

(Mike Perlman photo)

Evanston Police Cmdr. Tom Guenther says the 2011 Acura was traveling “at a higher rate of speed than the posted limit and failed to negotiate the curve.”

A fire official on the scene said the impact of the crash drove the car’s engine into the passenger compartment.

Guenther says officials are withholding the name of the 47-year-old victim pending notification of relatives. The NORTAF major crash assistance team is investigating. Police say no one else was in the vehicle when it crashed. 

The accident occurred in front of the Schwartzhoff Cleaners building at 600 Oakton St, where traffic turns onto Callan Ave. to go under the Metra and CTA viaducts.

Update 10:15 a.m. 2/25/11: The county medical examiner’s office has identified the victim as Richard Stafford of 71 Williamsburg Lane in Skokie.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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