Trump offers 'thoughts and prayers' to victims of Amtrak crash

Nichole Vega
February 6, 2018

The crash happened just after 2:30 a.m. According to reports, the train had about 140 passengers and eight crew members on board when the crash occurred.

"The lead engine derailed, as well as some passenger cars", Amtrak reported.

"We know that they are shaken up quite a bit and this is unlike anything else they've ever been through before", said Capt. Adam Myrick with the Lexington County Sheriff's Department.

The train, Amtrak's Silver Star service run, originated at Pennsylvania Station in NY and was bound for Miami, according to media reports.

The two dead were Amtrak employees on the passenger train, according to McMaster.

With 147 people on the Amtrak train, local authorities confirmed that nobody was on the CSX train. "More information will be provided as available".

The dead were identified as engineer Michael Kempf, 54, of Savannah, Georgia, and conductor Michael Cella, 36, of Orange Park, Florida.

"For whatever reason that switch was, as they say in the railroad industry, 'lined and locked, '" said Robert Sumwalt, chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board.

Officials said two people had been admitted to hospital.

Five thousand gallons of fuel also spilled in the collision.

A shelter and reception site were set up by the American Red Cross at nearby Pine Ridge Middle School.

US President Donald Trump was briefed on the incident and tweeted that his thoughts and prayers were with the victims.

The incident comes days after another Amtrak train collided with a garbage truck in Virginia, resulting in the death of one person and the injury of six others - including a congressman. The tool monitors a train's movement and can slow its speed or bring the train to a complete stop to avoid accidents, including collisions with other trains.

The injured were in hospitals as emergency responders and police were working on the scene.

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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