Two Dead in Amtrak Crash Near Philadelphia

WPVI-TV(PHILADELPHIA) --  Two people were killed when an Amtrak train partially derailed near Philadelphia on Sunday morning, officials said.

Amtrak said Train 89, traveling from New York to Savannah, Georgia, partially derailed after striking a backhoe that was on the tracks.

The Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency said the two fatalities were reportedly the backhoe operator and another track worker. Travis Thomas of the Chester Fire Department said the two people killed were not passengers. Amtrak did not immediately comment on the victims.

Thirty-five people were hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries, officials said.

The train struck the backhoe in Chester, Pennsylvania -- approximately 15 miles outside of Philadelphia -- and came to a stop in the neighboring town of Trainer, the fire department said.

The train had 341 passengers and seven crew members on board at the time of the crash.

Passenger Ari Ne’eman, who was sitting in the second car, told ABC News the train got "extremely bumpy" and at one point the window in the aisle across from him "started to break apart."

He said it appeared that many injuries were in the first car. Ne'eman said most passengers were fine and that they were being moved to a local church.

Federal Railroad Administration officials were at the scene Sunday. The National Transportation Safety Board was notified and planned to send a team.

Amtrak said Sunday afternoon it had resumed limited service between Wilmington and Philadelphia, and then Sunday evening said it would operate regularly scheduled trains on Monday, though Acela Express, Northeast Regional and other services would be subject to some delays between Philadelphia and Wilmington. Keystone Service between New York and Harrisburg was not affected, Amtrak said.

As part of the investigation, National Transportation Safety Board officials will look at mechanical operations, signal, track, human performance and survival performance, Ryan Frigo of the NTSB said Sunday afternoon.


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