Monday morning, tragedy struck the Pacific Northwest in the form of a train derailment that left several people dead. The Amtrak train was carrying 77 passengers and five crew members from Seattle to Portland. Here’s what happened…
From NBC News:
Several people were killed Monday when the opening of a highly touted new rail link outside Tacoma, Washington, ended with the inaugural train derailing and careening off a bridge onto a highway below.
Dozens more riders were reported injured in the 7:40 a.m. PT crash that left one rail car upside down on the roadway and a second dangling from the bridge. Several cars and a pair of trucks were involved in the pileup, but no motorists were killed, officials said.
The National Transportation Safety Board said Monday afternoon that federal investigators were on their way to the site, about 20 miles south of Tacoma. It is not clear what caused the crash. But an Amtrak official said the train was not using a technology called positive train control, which can prevent derailments caused by excessive speed.
Here’s some more info…
— Bettina Hansen (@bettinahansen) December 18, 2017
Latest information about the Amtrak train derailment in Washington: https://t.co/Sps2qU7ERc
– At least 6 killed; death count expected to rise, according to U.S. official
– Train may have struck something on the track
– Positive train control technology was not implemented pic.twitter.com/xYiQjlC87m
— Brendan Weber (@BrendanNWeber) December 18, 2017
Hard to even imagine what that experience would be like.
From ABC News:
Konzelman, 24, told ABC News that he and Hoverson, 23, were headed to work in Olympia when they saw train cars topple off the overpass, smashing into a semi-truck and several other vehicles on the road below.
Amtrak Cascades train 501 was taking its inaugural run down a new route today outside of Tacoma, Washington. It was carrying 78 passengers and five crew members, Amtrak confirms.
President Trump responded to the crash.
From Fox News:
President Trump said Monday that the deadly Amtrak derailment shows the need for a new infrastructure plan, while offering his “thoughts and prayers” to the victims of the Washington state tragedy.
“The train accident that just occurred in DuPont, WA shows more than ever why our soon to be submitted infrastructure plan must be approved quickly. Seven trillion dollars spent in the Middle East while our roads, bridges, tunnels, railways (and more) crumble! Not for long!” Trump tweeted.
It looks like this was a new rail line but Trump’s point is obviously correct. The infrastructure in this country is crumbling. Pretty horrific that something like this could happen on the maiden voyage of a railway that has gotten so much attention.
Here’s more about what may have gone wrong.
From New York Post:
Monday’s deadly Amtrak train derailment appears to have been caused by an object on the railway, according to a government official briefed on the crash.
A preliminary investigation suggests maintenance problems are unlikely to blame because the incident took place on brand-new tracks, the official told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.
At least six people were killed and the death toll is expected to rise, the official said.
There are a lot of theories out there as to what happened and we will have to wait and see what the investigation discovers but it will be interesting to see what exactly was on the tracks and how it got there.
Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone involved and hopefully they can get to the bottom of this soon.