US train collision leaves two dead, scores injured | Daily News

US train collision leaves two dead, scores injured

Amtrak train crash in Cayce, South Carolina.
Amtrak train crash in Cayce, South Carolina.

US: An Amtrak passenger train apparently travelling on the wrong track collided with a parked freight train in South Carolina on Sunday, killing two crew members and injuring at least 116 in the railroad’s third fatal crash in as many months.

Amtrak Train 91 was carrying 139 passengers and eight crew members to Miami from New York when it hit the CSX Corp freight train at about 2.35am local time near the state capital and derailed, the railroad said in a statement.

South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster said it appeared that the Amtrak train was on the wrong track when it slammed into the parked CSX freight train, which had no one aboard.

“It’s a horrible thing to see, to understand what force was involved,” McMaster told a news conference. “The first engine of the freight train was torn up, and the single engine of the passenger train is barely recognisable.”

The southbound passenger train’s locomotive was left on its side, and the first car was bent and also derailed, although it remained upright, according to images from the scene in the small city of Cayce, South Carolina.

At least four cars of the freight train, which was northbound before it was parked, were crumpled, looking like crushed tin foil, but remained on the tracks.

The passenger train was part of Amtrak’ Silver Star Service, and the wreck occurred about eight kilometres south west of the state’s capital, Columbia. Local media said some 19,000 litres of fuel leaked as a result of the collision. but authorities said it was under control and posed no threat to public safety.

The number of injured rose to 116 from a previous count of 70, said Lexington County spokesman Harrison Cahill.

“The injuries range from cuts and bruises to severe broken bones,” said Derrec Becker, public information officer for the South Carolina Emergency Management Division. “All the injured have been transported to local hospitals.”

US President Donald Trump was getting regular updates on the crash while at his resort in Palm Beach, Florida. “Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone that has been affected by this incident,” said a White House spokeswoman.

In December, three people were killed when an Amtrak passenger train derailed in Washington state. In late January, an Amtrak train carrying Republican members of the US Congress killed one person in a garbage truck with which it collided in Virginia.



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