A 75-year-old man trying to protect his dog was hit and killed by a train in Del Mar, the San Diego County Sheriff's Department said.
The man was walking his dog without a leash Friday afternoon near the railroad tracks beside the 11th Street bluff.
The train engineer, seeing the man and dog, sounded the train's horn to give warning, the Sheriff's Department said.
The dog became startled and ran toward the tracks. The owner chased the dog and was struck by the train. He was declared dead at the scene.
The dog, a Labrador retriever, was not injured. It was found by a sheriff's deputy and returned to the man's family.
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