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Amtrak Derailment in Washington State

By: WTB BLOGGER

At least six people were killed and 77 injured Monday when an Amtrak train on a new route derailed and hurtled off a bridge over Interstate 5 near DuPont.

The Washington State Patrol is expected to release the number of fatalities later in the day. The Associated Press reported at least six dead, citing an unnamed U.S. official.

Gov. Jay Inslee called a state of emergency in two counties shortly after the train derailed about 7:40 a.m. just south of Mounts Road.

“It couldn’t have happened in a worst spot,” Pierce County sheriff’s spokesman Ed Troyer said. “The train cars are dangling by the bridge, some are in the woods and some are on the freeway.”

Several cars from an Amtrak train plunged onto Interstate 5 near Tacoma, Washington, after it derailed on a railway bridge on Monday, December 18. Amtrak confirmed train 501 was involved in the incident in an tweet and officials from Washington State Department of Transport warned that all the southbound lanes of Interstate 5 had been closed. The train was the first to run on a new route connecting Seattle and Portland.

Passenger Chris Karnes, on board the train, said his carriage had rushed down an ridge then come to a stop: “We could hear and feel the cars crumpling and breaking apart, and water came out from the ceiling.”

“In order to get out… we had to kick out the emergency window,” he added.

Amtrak said approximately 78 passengers and five crew members had been on board the train.

Officials have set up a family reunification center at DuPont city hall, and asked people not to come to the scene of the crash.

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