Two people have been killed after an Amtrak train derailed in the US with 333 passengers and seven crew on board, Sky News reports. More than 30 people were also injured after Train 89 struck construction equipment on the track in the town of Chester, about 15 miles south of Philadelphia.
The impact is believed to have derailed the train’s lead engine, and local emergency responders are on the scene. Amtrak spokesman Mike Tolbert said those taken to hospital are not considered to have life-threatening injuries, and neither of the two people who died were passengers.
Ari Ne’eman, who was on the second carriage at the time of the crash, said: “The car started shaking wildly, there was a smell of smoke, it looked like there was a small fire and then the window across from us blew out.
“It was a very frightening experience. I’m frankly very glad that I was not on the first car.” The service derailed as it travelled from New York City to Savannah, Georgia.
Passengers had begun to get off the train when it came to an abrupt halt after the collision, but the conductor stopped them – and officials began to evacuate people at the rear of the train.
Services on the Northeast Corridor connecting New York and Philadelphia – one of America’s busiest railway lines – have been disrupted. Amtrak has opened a special helpline for the friends and family of those on board the train.
Investigators from the Federal Railroad Administration are also on the scene. In May 2015, eight people were killed and 200 others injured after an Amtrak train in Philadelphia derailed at a speed of 106mph – with four carriages and the locomotive leaving the track.