An Amtrak train derailed in Missouri on Monday, killing at least three passengers and injuring 50 others, authorities say.
Cpl Justin Dunn, a spokeswoman for Missouri State Highway Patrol Troop B, informed reporters that two of the three victims killed in the crash were on board the train. The third was on a dump truck that was hit by the railway.
Authorities said the terrible tragedy happened at an uncontrolled crossroads that had no warning lights and motion gates. It was the gravel road that crossed the railroad tracks southwest of town, stated CNN.
Furthermore, US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg tweeted Monday evening that Federal Railroad Administration personnel were on their way to the scene to assist with the investigation.
Meanwhile, Amtrak stated that the train collided with the dump truck at about 12:42 PM CT or 1:42 PM ET at a public crossing near the city of Mendon.
In an updated statement, company officials allegedly revealed that eight cars and two locomotives left the track “after striking a truck that was obstructing a public crossing near Mendon, Missouri.” In addition, Dunn told reporters that seven cars were derailed.
Initially, Amtrak stated that the train carried around 243 passengers and 12 staff members. Robert Nightingale, a passenger in a sleeper car, stated he was dozing off when he heard something.
“It all happened like slow motion,” Nightingale told CNN. It started to rock and rock and then flicker and then all of a sudden — all this dust was through my glass.”
He also recalled the train collapsing on the side his compartment was on, and because he couldn’t get out of the window, he had to climb up to the hallway and then out of the collapsed train. He further stated that the train “hit something major to causing… every car to go off.”
The crash came one day after another Amtrak train collided with a car in California’s East Bay, killing at least three people.
In that instance, there were 85 people on board; the train was traveling from Stockton to Martinez when the collision occurred.
There were no reported injuries among the train passengers and crew, officials said.