Amtrak Derailment: At Least 50 Hurt in Montana, Official Says

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U.S.|At Least 3 Killed and 50 Hurt successful Amtrak Derailment successful Montana, Officials Say

The derailment, involving 5 cars of the Empire Builder train, happened adjacent Joplin, Mont., connected Saturday afternoon.

An Amtrak bid     derailed successful  Montana connected  Saturday afternoon, injuring astatine  slightest  50 people, an authoritative  said.
Credit...Jacob Cordeiro

Sept. 25, 2021Updated 10:36 p.m. ET

At slightest 3 radical were killed and 50 others were injured aft an Amtrak bid derailed successful Montana connected Saturday afternoon, mounting disconnected a frantic effect by rescuers who scrambled to extricate passengers from cars, the authorities said.

Amtrak said that 5 cars connected an Empire Builder bid had derailed astatine astir 4 p.m. section time. About 147 passengers and 13 unit members were connected board, “with injuries reported,” Amtrak said successful a statement.

The Liberty County Sheriff’s Office said that 3 radical were confirmed dead.

Amanda Frickel, the catastrophe and exigency services coordinator for Hill County, Mont., said successful an interrogation “well over” 50 radical had been injured.

Ms. Frickel said the train, which was headed west, derailed conscionable extracurricular Joplin, Mont., which is astir 200 miles northbound of Helena.

Ms. Frickel said that rescuers from six counties were responding to the country and that arsenic galore arsenic 5 hospitals were connected standby to person injured passengers. There were besides a fig of aesculapian helicopters lasting by, she said.

“Everybody who is live has been extricated from the wreck,” Ms. Frickel said.

Officials had evacuated survivors to 2 abstracted sites and were doing a caput count. Emergency responders planned to enactment radical up successful hotels erstwhile their aesculapian needs had been seen to.

“Every region astir is assisting,” said Sheriff Donna Whitt of Toole County, Mont.

Amtrak said successful a connection that it was “working with the section authorities to transport injured passengers, and safely evacuate each different passengers.”

Megan Vandervest, who was going to sojourn a person successful Seattle, boarded the bid connected Friday nighttime from Minneapolis, wherever she lives.

On Saturday afternoon, she was dormant successful the archetypal car erstwhile she was jolted awake.

“My archetypal thought was that we were derailing because, to beryllium honest, I person anxiousness and I had heard stories astir trains derailing,” Ms. Vandervest said. “My 2nd thought was that’s crazy. We wouldn’t beryllium derailing. Like, that doesn’t happen.”


Credit...Jacob Cordeiro

She soon figured it out. The car she was successful was afloat connected the tracks.

But the car down hers was tilted over, the 1 down that was wholly tipped over, and the 3 cars down that “had wholly fallen disconnected the tracks and were detached from the train,” she said.

Speaking from the Liberty County Senior Center, wherever passengers were being taken, Ms. Vandervest said she felt fortunate that she and the 3 different radical she was with were not injured.

In her car, she said, it felt similar “extreme turbulence connected a plane.”

Austin Knudsen, Montana’s lawyer general, said that Montana Highway Patrol troopers were among those helping with the rescue efforts. “We are praying for the information of each passengers and unit who were connected board,” helium said.

Karen Jelly, who works astatine Holland & Bonine Funeral Home, successful Havre, Mont., said the ceremonial location was waiting for a dreaded telephone telephone from the authorities. “It’s going to beryllium precise atrocious erstwhile we get that telephone call,” she said.

Ms. Jelly, who moved determination 9 years agone from Wyoming, said the country is highly welcoming.

She said the assemblage “rallies astir radical erstwhile things spell bad.” Now, she said, “it’s going to beryllium marred by this memory.”

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