Amtrak Train Strikes Tractor-Trailer In North Carolina & At Least 40 Have Been Left Injured
In the latest in a string of dramatic train crashes, an Amtrak train collided with a tractor-trailer on Monday afternoon in Halifax, North Carolina, leaving at least 40 people injured. Victims were taken to local hospitals by bus or ambulance, bearing minor injuries. No one faced life-threatening injuries, and 173 passengers were left uninjured.
The collision occurred when the New York-bound train, the Carolinian No. 80 from Charlotte, slammed into a tractor-trailer that was apparently stuck on the tracks. The accident happened at about 12:15 p.m. at a highway intersection, leaving the locomotive and two cars, including the baggage car, derailed. According to witnesses, the tractor-trailer — carrying a mobile home — had been trying to navigate a turn across the highway for about 15 minutes before the train approached. The truck was unable to make the difficult left turn on Highway 301 before the train struck. The impact of the crash threw passengers out of their seats, but there are no fatalities reported as of yet.
In a statement to ABC News, Amtrak said:
There were 212 passengers and eight crew members on board and initial reports are that several passengers have been injured and taken to local medical facilities for treatment. At this time, none of the injuries have been reported as life-threatening. Local emergency responders are on the scene and an investigation is ongoing.
One eyewitness to the crash, Leslie Cipriani, said she had "never seen anything like that before in my life." Cipriani recorded a video of the collision.
News of the North Carolina collision comes only shortly over a month since the deadly Metro North train crash in Valhalla, New York, killed six people on Feb. 3. The accident was the deadliest in the rail line's history. But these aren't the only two commuter train incidents this winter.
Only weeks after the now-infamous Valhalla crash, on Feb. 24, 28 people were injured — four critically — when a California commuter train collided with a tractor-trailer. In Ventura County, north of Los Angeles, a truck driver abandoned his rig on the tracks, causing the Metrolink train to slam into it and become engulfed in flames. The engineer of the train died days later.
A Long Island Rail Road train slammed into a car on March 3. The train did not come off the tracks — the car was stuck between the warning signs, and the driver of the car was severely injured, though none of the train's 13 passengers were hurt.