Amtrak Train Derails After Reportedly Traveling 106 Miles Per Hour

Posted By Mirman, Markovits & Landau, P.C. || 14-May-2015

At least 140 individuals were injured and 8 deaths were reported as a result of the fatal Amtrak train derailment that happened in Philadelphia on Tuesday night. Train 188 had six passenger cars, with one engine car. Emergency responders worked tirelessly to rescue the passengers from the overturned cars.

Surviving passengers recalled the scene vividly. A loud bump-bump sound, feeling the train leave the ground, and then the tumble of the car. Passengers were knocked into one another, crashed into a window, or thrown into one another. Some reports of suitcases, books, and other items hurled onto bodies. One woman had become trapped under a chair.

Investigators from the National Safety Board of Transportation and others arrived to survey the wreckage. A “black box” recorder had been recovered from the scene of the incident, documenting the very last moments before the derailment.

Train May Have Been Speeding

Speeding is one of the leading causes behind many train derailments and railroad accidents. Allegedly, Train 188 derailed as it was rounding a curve, reportedly traveling at 106 miles per hour, nearly twice the speed limit in that area, which is 50 miles per hour. On linear stretches of track, the speed limit is around 70 miles per hour. It was also reported that the engineer of the train had hit the emergency brake just moments before derailing. This begs the question as to why the train was speeding. That is currently the focus of the investigation.

No Word Yet from the Engineer

The engineer had been working at Amtrak for about nine years, first as a passenger conductor and then promoted to his engineer position. He sustained numerous injuries during the crash and was being treated at a local hospital. After treatment, he was then taken to the Philadelphia Police Department. He supplied a blood test to the authorities, which came up negative, and he had no known medical conditions.

Understandably, the engineer is shaken and has yet to tell his side of the story. They want to know what was going on in his head, what was happening in the cars before, during, and after. Authorities are giving him a chance to recover from his injuries and give him a respectful amount of time to adjust before delving further. There is also a ton of evidence that has yet to still be gathered at the wreckage site.

As of now, Amtrak has decided to suspend all trips between New York and Philadelphia.

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