Sunday, October 9, 2016

A Long Island Rail Road train struck a work train Saturday and derailed, injuring 29 people; The work train caught fire

29 Hurt After LIRR Train Derails on Long Island

by Phil Helsel

A Long Island Rail Road train struck a work train Saturday and derailed, injuring 29 people, authorities said.

The collision a half-mile east of the New Hyde Park station occurred at 9:10 p.m., and the first three cars derailed, Metropolitan Transportation Authority Salvatore Arena said. The work train caught fire, he said.

There were 29 injuries, mostly broken bones and cuts and bruises, officials said. Some of the injuries were described as serious but none appeared to be life threatening.

There were around 600 passengers on the eastbound train, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said. "Staff from the MTA and the LIRR are on the scene and will work around the clock to determine the cause of this derailment and restore service as quickly as possible," Cuomo said.

"The train was going normally, it was going at its normal speed, and then it started to shake, but that's sort of normal, and then everyone started to sort of scream — so I realized something was wrong," Lindsay Javitz, who was on the derailed train, told NBC New York.

"And the train was really (going) back and forth and shaking ... and then I look out the window and I saw a spark or a fire type thing ... and then the train abruptly stopped and the car in front of mine was tilted, as if it wasn't fully on the track," she said.

There were conflicting initial reports of how many were injured. Nassau County Police initially said 50 to 100 people were reported injured, but later revised that number to around 20.

The accident comes more than a week after a commuter train slammed into a station in Hoboken, New Jersey, killing a woman standing on the platform and injuring dozens. That train is operated by New Jersey Transit.