An Amtrak train with over 240 passengers onboard derailed in Missouri today in what officials have described as a “mass fatality event” although there has been no official confirmation on the exact number of deaths so far.
The Southwest Chief traveling from Chicago to Los Angeles derailed in Mendon, Missouri, after it reportedly struck a dump truck. Angie Hutschreider, a reporter for the local Linn County Leader, first broke the story according to local Fox affiliate KMIZ. At least three people have been transported to University Hospital in Columbus.
Local NBC affiliate KSHB reported the train was traveling at approximately 90 mph as it approached Marceline, Missouri, just before 2:41 p.m. Five minutes later, train trackers stated the train had come to a complete stop at 2:46 p.m. in Mendon.
\u201cThe MSHP & numerous other agencies have responded to an injury traffic crash involving a train & a dump truck southwest of Mendon, MO in Chariton County. Approximately 8 train cars have derailed. Local & surrounding agencies are on scene providing mutual aid assistance.\u201d
Missouri Governor Mike Parson acknowledged the accident in a tweet today, asking Missourians to offer their prayers and support to the injured and first responders.
\u201cWe are saddened to hear of the Amtrak train derailment in Chariton County this afternoon. @MoPublicSafety, @MSHP troopers, and other emergency management personnel are responding. We ask Missourians to join us in praying for all those impacted.\u201d
— Governor Mike Parson (@Governor Mike Parson)
While the Missouri Department of Natural Resources confirmed a “large fatality event” to KMIZ, there have been no further statements regarding fatalities.
Several passengers on the derailed train posted pictures and videos of the aftermath to social media.
\u201cA view inside the train, nothing graphic\u201d
The Southwest Chief is a daily train that connects Chicago and Los Angeles, with stops in Kansas City, Albuquerque, Flagstaff, and other locations. The popular route is a multi-day trip with sleeper and dining cars and passes through some of the most spectacular scenery of the American west.
This was the second crash of an Amtrak train in as many days. CBS Bay Area reported a train with 85 passengers struck a vehicle in a rural area of Contra Costa County on Sunday, killing three people and injuring two others including a child. Both the surviving victims were airlifted to local hospitals with major injuries. All the dead and injured were in the struck vehicle and not on the train.