The good news: The ducklings survived.
The bad news: When the conductor of an eastbound MAX train on Thursday morning slammed on the brakes to avoid a family of ducks sauntering across the tracks, a 67-year-old passenger was sent crashing headfirst into an interior wall of the train.
The duckling incident led to delays and snarled train traffic on TriMet's westside MAX system.
Paramedics treated the woman at the scene and carried her off the train on a stretcher.
TriMet confirmed the incident, saying the woman suffered minor injuries. The train was moving slowly at the time, it added.
"While it may have been an instinctual act by the operator to brake for the duck and ducklings, we regret any injury to our rider," TriMet spokeswoman Roberta Alstadt said in a written statement.
Alstadt refused to identify the injured rider.
The incident began about 8 a.m. near the Beaverton Transit Center. A blue-line train had just left the stop headed eastbound when the operator spotted the family of ducks on the tracks and hit the skids.
After sitting there unmoving for several minutes, the train slowly reversed course and returned to the transit center, where the woman was treated.
For reasons never explained, TriMet finally ushered everyone off the train involved in the duckling incident. The train then left the station empty, leading to more than a little grumbling from passengers, who already had been delayed for about 30 minutes by then.
Other eastbound trains soon showed up.
A fairly regular MAX commuter, Frazier said this morning was unique in his experience. "The thing is, I just barely missed the train before this one," he said. "I would have avoided a lot of hassle. "
-- Jeff Manning