Head-On Collision Kills 2 Amtrak Workers, Over 100 Others Injured

06 February, 2018, 15:06 | Author: Barbara Daniel
  • Breaking News image

Two people were killed and at least 70 others injured when an Amtrak train derailed early Sunday in SC. And 116 people were taken to four hospitals, according to the governor. Eight crew members were on the Amtrak train along with 139 passengers. At least 70 people were transported to local hospitals, Lexington County spokesman Harrison Cahill said at a news conference. Officials have also said that although 5,000 gallons (19,000 liters) of fuel were spilled due to the crash, there is no danger to the public. He had taken shelter with other passengers at the nearby Pine Ridge Middle School, where authorities were providing medical care.

This photo shows passenger cars derailed after the collision.

Two Amtrak employees were killed: Michael Kempf, 54, of Savannah, GA and Michael Cella, 34, of Orange Park, FL. Kempf was the engineer of the Amtrak train and Cella was the conductor of the train. These injuries ranged from small scratches to broken bones.

The National Transportation Safety Board is now investigating the crash.

Among the passengers on the train was Philadelphia man Derek Pettaway, who posted on social media to tell his friends and family he was safe.

"We just awoke to violent shaking; I just knew immediately we were off the tracks and I couldn't believe it was actually happening."
"Thank you to our incredible First Responders for the work they've done!"

Investigators focused on whether the crash in the Pine Ridge-Cayce area was caused by a misaligned track switch that sent the Amtrak veering off course.

Passengers were held in a local Red Cross reception site and were provided food, and alternative methods of transportation while luggage and other belongings were sorted out to their rightful owners. Anyone seeking info about passengers on Train 91 should call the Amtrak info line at 1-800-523-9101.

The photo above was released by the Lexington Sheriff's Department.

It's the third crash involving an Amtrak train since December.

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