Two crashes involving Amtrak trains occurred in the South late Thursday, one of them in Florida that injured three people and another in Mississippi that killed a Florida man.
An Amtrak passenger train traveling from Miami up the East Coast smashed into an attached trailer that was idled on the track, sending three people to the hospital with minor injuries, the Florida Highway Patrol said.
The flatbed semi-trailer was stopped over a railroad crossing late Thursday while attached to a truck near Palatka in northeast Florida. The truck didn’t move despite warning signals on the track. The Silver Star Train 92 hit the trailer, splitting it in half and disabling the train engine, the Florida Highway Patrol said in a report.
Fourteen passengers were evaluated by firefighters on the train, and a crew member and two passengers were taken to a nearby hospital for treatment of minor injuries, the report said.
The driver of the semi-trailer truck was cited.
The train resumed its northbound trip overnight Friday, running almost six hours late, Amtrak tweeted.
Also late Thursday, an Amtrak passenger train from New Orleans to Chicago collided with a semi-trailer, killing two people who were not on board, damaging the train engine and forcing it to terminate the route in Mississippi, authorities said Friday.
The wreck involving City of New Orleans Train 58 happened Thursday night at a crossing south of the Jackson, Mississippi Amtrak station, Amtrak said in a statement.
The Hinds County Coroner’s Office identified the two men who died as James Creel of Lake, Mississippi; and Scott Harstock of Florida.
There were were no reports of injuries among the 142 passengers or crew members onboard, the rail service said.
“This particular railroad section does not have crossing arms or flashing lights,” Byram Police Chief David Errington told WLBT-TV.
“He was pulling another tractor-trailer across the railroad tracks to enter the Jackson Motor Speedway area and did not see the train approaching, and the train struck the passenger side of the wrecker, pulling the broken down tractor-trailer,” Errington said.
The trains — on what Amtrak calls the City of New Orleans route — operate daily between New Orleans and Chicago.