At least three derailments of Amtrak trains were reported in the last couple of months leading to deaths and injuries of passengers. The first incident occurred in December when a few of the train’s cars spilled on to a crowded highway while traversing a bridge resulting in three deaths.
The second incident happened about last week wherein one person was killed when the train collided with a garbage truck. The train’s passengers included GOP lawmakers who were being carried to a West Virginia retreat.
The latest incident took place took place today when an Amtrak train bound to Miami hit a CSX goods train leading to derailment near Columbia, South Carolina. No less than two people died and 70 were wounded as per reports of Amtrak officials and the police. The collision of the train which was coming from New York happened at 2.35 a.m. at Cayce, South Carolina and led to the derailment of the lead engine and a few passenger cars. The number of passengers and crew totaled 139 and 8, respectively.
As per report of Derrec Becker of South Carolina Emergency Management Division, injuries were limited to broken bones and minor cuts with all passengers being safely disembarked from the train. Harrison Cahill, spokesman for Lexington County stated that the injured passengers were admitted to hospitals in the area. He further assured that in spite of an approximate 5000 gallons of fuel spillage from the two leaks in the train there was so far no danger to the public.
The reason for the occurrence of the crash was yet to be known and source of fuel leakage was to be found out. Investigations by National Transportation Safety Board and CSX would begin soon. Robert Sumwalt, National Transportation Safety Board’s Chairman stated that recovery of data recorders to gain information about the Amtrak train’s speed at the collision point was of paramount importance.
One of the passengers disclosed that more than panic most of them were in a state of shock.