An Amtrak passenger train traveling from Vermont to Washington, D.C. derailed near Northfield, VT at about 10:30 A.M. on October 5, 2015. Seven of the 102 passengers were injured. Fortunately, there were no deaths in the crash. All injured passengers have now been released from the hospital.
According to initial reports, the train derailment was due to fallen rocks on the track. The collision caused at least two of its cars to go off the tracks and over an embankment. Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin said that a freight train had traveled safely on Sunday night through the area where the Amtrak derailment happened the next morning. Federal investigators from the Federal Railroad Administration and NTSB continue their formal inquiry into the cause of the crash. The NTSB will make recommendations after completing its investigation.
Passengers on the train told officials that it seemed to be operating safely and at proper speeds before the accident. The speed limit was 59 MPH. They said it felt like the train jerked or jolted just before it derailed, according to a local news outlet. After the crash, several passengers escaped the train with their luggage and walked the tracks until first responders arrived at the scene.
Amtrak Train 55, called the Vermonter, was back in service shortly after the accident on a modified schedule. The section of railroad tracks where the derailment occurred was closed to passenger travel and Vermont Amtrak passengers bused to and from Springfield, Massachusetts.
Several hundred gallons of diesel fuel were spilled as a result of the Amtrak derailment. Approximately 400 gallons of fuel were recovered from the fuel tank to prevent further spillage while another 900 gallons remain unaccounted for. Governor Shumlin’s office said that the spilled fuel is unlikely to pose a threat to the local water supply.
More Amtrak train derailment lawsuit information will be posted as it becomes available.