Amtrak train crash in SC kills two, injures more than 100
By MEG KINNARD
An Amtrak passenger train hurtling through the early morning darkness Sunday slammed into a freight train parked along a siding in South Carolina, killing two Amtrak crew members and injuring more than 110 people, authorities said.
It was the third deadly wreck involving Amtrak in less than two months.
The Silver Star was en route from New York to Miami with nearly 150 people aboard around 2:45 a.m. when it struck the CSX train at an estimated 59 mph, Gov. Henry McMaster said. The crash happened around a switchyard about 10 miles (16 kilometers) south of Columbia.
The governor said investigators have yet to determine how the Amtrak train ended up on the side track.
“The CSX was on the track it was supposed to be on,” McMaster said.
The National Transportation Safety Board sent investigators to the scene.
In an emailed statement, Amtrak said that it was “deeply saddened” by the deaths and that it was cooperating fully with the NTSB. It did not address the cause of the crash but said CSX maintains all the tracks and signals where the accident happened and controls access to the sidings and yards.
CSX did not immediately return an email and telephone call.
The force of the crash dislodged a seat and knocked it onto passenger Tronia Dorsey’s legs, said her son, Andre Neblett, who spoke with her. The 43-year-old woman, who escaped with minor scratches and bruises, described a terrifying scene inside the dark compartment, with people screaming and babies wailing, he said.