'Injuries and casualties' from Amtrak derailment

19 December, 2017, 11:03 | Author: Clint Gray
  • Cars from an Amtrak train lay spilled onto Interstate 5 below alongside smashed vehicles as some train cars remain on the tracks above Monday Dec. 18 2017 in DuPont Wash. The Amtrak train making the first-ever run along a faster new route hurtled off

Six people were killed and scores more seriously injured Monday when an Amtrak train on its inaugural journey derailed on a bridge and slammed onto a busy highway.

Multiple people were killed after an Amtrak train crashed during its first trip on a new route outside Tacoma, Washington, a spokesperson for the Pierce County Sheriff's Department confirmed Monday.

"All of a sudden, we felt this rocking and creaking noise, and it felt like we were heading down a hill", passenger Chris Karnes said, as cited by Reuters. Authorities later added that several cars had been struck on Interstate 5 near the rail tracks, but that no fatalities of motorists had been reported.

Amtrak president and co-chief executive Richard Anderson said: "On behalf of everyone at Amtrak, we are deeply saddened by all that has happened today".

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A website that maps location and speed using data from Amtrak's train tracker app showed the train was going 81.1 miles per hour (129 kph) about a quarter of a mile from the point where it derailed, where the speed limit is significantly lower.

On Monday, Amtrak inaugurated service through the new Point Defiance Bypass near Tacoma, Washington. The locomotive and several of the train's passenger cars landed on the interstate.

Karnes said that people had escaped the wreckage by kicking out windows.

The National Transportation Safety Board is sending a team to investigate the cause of the derailment, NTSB spokesman Eric Weiss said, and the Federal Railroad Administration will send investigators to join them. "We got off after shooting the video".

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Emergency crews respond to the scene of a train derailment in Washington state, December 18, 2017.

The train was reportedly travelling at more than 80 miles per hour when it derailed. "I saw a little bit of both", Konzelman said.

He was unhurt and is now near the medical tents set up in a median area between north- and sound-bound Interstate 5, just south of DuPont, Washington.

"Come back when there is that accident, and try to justify not putting in those safety enhancements, or you can go back now and advocate for the money to do it, because this project was never needed and endangers our citizens", Anderson said, according to a local ABC affiliate. Seven trillion dollars spent in the Middle East while our roads, bridges, tunnels, railways (and more) crumble!

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