Amtrak Train Derails On Overpass In Washington State, Causing 'Multiple Fatalities'

The southbound lanes of I-5 were blocked near Mounts Road in Pierce county after a train derailed from an overpass on Monday morning Dec. 18 2017

A website that maps location and speed using data from Amtrak's train tracker app showed the train was going 81.1 miles per hour (129 kph) about a quarter of a mile from the point where it derailed, where the speed limit is significantly lower.

The chart, dated February 7, was submitted to the Federal Railroad Administration in anticipation of the start of passenger service along a new bypass route that shaves off 10 minutes for the trip between Seattle and Portland, Oregon. All but one of its cars and engines jumped the tracks, and at least one fell to the roadway below. "When we got to the scene, it was obvious there were fatalities and injuries, and some people were able to get off the train", Troyer said.

Federal investigators will look at which factors could have contributed to the crash to determine a probable cause.

Just after the train derailed, the conductor spoke with dispatch, in a conversation obtained by Broadcastify.com. Then there was people screaming, " Shafer said.

After the dispatcher asked whether everyone was OK, the crew member replied, "I am still figuring that out".

A footage of a local TV showed that at least one rail auto fell off a bridge over a traffic-clogged highway. "Come back when there is that accident, and try to justify not putting in those safety enhancements, or you can go back now and advocate for the money to do it, because this project was never needed and endangers our citizens" Anderson said. "My auto just started shaking really, really badly", he said.

The back of his train auto was wide open because it had separated from the rest of the train, so he and others were able to jump out to safety.

He called it a miracle an infant child he saw from the scene appeared completely unharmed.

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US President Trump tweeted that the crash "shows more than ever why our soon to be submitted infrastructure plan must be approved quickly". The accident happened on a newly completed bypass.

The crash occurred on the first day Amtrak trains ran on a new route between Washington's Tacoma and Olympia.

While picturesque, the route features single-track tunnels and a risk of landslides, and the tight curves and heavy freight train traffic requires the Amtrak Cascades to slow down.

In Washington state, Amtrak suspended a train engineer earlier this year after a derailment near Steilacoom.

The train that derailed Monday during the morning rush hour left the track as it was about to cross over southbound lanes of I-5 near the south end of the bypass.

"All of a sudden, we felt this rocking and creaking noise, and it felt like we were heading down a hill", Mr. Karnes said.

"Let me begin by expressing our deepest sympathies and most heartfelt prayers to the victims of the train derailment in Washington state", Trump said.

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