As of: 09/26/2021 11:16 am
At least three people were killed in a train accident in the US state of Montana. Dozens more were injured. Why the train derailed with around 160 people on board is still unclear.
At least three people were killed and dozens more injured in a train wreck in the United States. As the state railway company Amtrak announced, the train with around 160 people on board derailed on Saturday afternoon (local time) in the state of Montana. The cause of the accident was initially unclear, the rescue work is ongoing.
The train with around 141 passengers and 16 crew members was on its way from Chicago to Seattle on the Pacific coast. The accident occurred in a remote area in the northwestern state of Montana near the 200-inhabitant village of Joplin. Around 4 p.m. (local time) eight of the ten wagons derailed.
“We are deeply saddened to learn that local authorities have now confirmed that three people were killed in this accident,” said Amtrak. The company is working with local authorities to bring the injured passengers and employees to safety.
“Well over 50 people injured”
Montana’s disaster control coordinator Amanda Frickel told the New York Times that “well over 50 people were injured”. The rescue workers are on site, rescue helicopters are ready. Several hospitals in the region were preparing to accept injured passengers. “All of the survivors were released from the wreck,” she said. The authorities could not initially provide any further information.
Videos posted on online networks and distributed by local media showed cars that had jumped off the rails, with at least one car lying on its side. Waiting passengers with luggage stood next to the tracks. “My thoughts are with all passengers, the crew and the rescue workers on site,” said Montana’s Senator Jon Tester.
Fatal accidents are not uncommon
The National Road Safety Council announced that an investigation into the cause of the accident had been initiated. The rail network in the US is chronically underfunded and fatal accidents are not uncommon. In 2018, two people died in the state of South Carolina when an Amtrak train collided with a freight train. 70 people were injured. Inadequate security checks were later blamed for the accident.
In 2017, three people died when an Amtrak train first traveled on a new route in Washington state and derailed. Several wagons fell off a bridge on a busy motorway during rush hour. The worst rail accident in half a century occurred in 1972: At that time, two suburban trains collided in Chicago; 45 people died and more than 330 were injured.