For the Second Time in 2 Weeks, Train Derails at Penn StationApr 4, 2017
NJ Transit Train Derails at Penn Station, Injuring 5 People
For the second time in two weeks, a train derailed at Penn Station. On the morning of Apr. 3, 2017, a NJ Transit Train derailed, causing at least five people to suffer minor injuries. This is the second train derailment to recently occur in Penn Station, sparking concerns and criticism about the deteriorating infrastructure.
The personal injury attorneys at Parker Waichman LLP have decades of experience representing clients in lawsuits involving accidents. The firm continues to offer free legal consultations to individuals with questions about filing a train accident lawsuit.
According to CBS New York, the NJ Transit train derailed while pulling into Penn Station during the morning commute. The train accident caused at least five people to be injured, and one person was seen being carried out on a stretcher. The injuries were reportedly minor.
Several passengers described the experience to CBS2. "It was literally like an amusement ride," one rider said. "Bodies everywhere piling up."
Another passenger told CBS2 "It just felt like a movie earthquake scene,"
"It was pretty wild," the rider said. "Everyone just started jumping up and down, falling on the floor. Luckily after a couple of seconds, the whole thing just stopped, was calm and people checked to make sure there were no injuries."
The derailed train was carrying roughly 1,200 passengers. Unloading the passengers took about two hours. The operation was complicated because the cars were pinched in the derailment, causing the doors to misalign, said FDNY Commander Roger Sakowich, according to WCBS 880's Marla Diamond.
Some passengers said they were not informed of what was happening, making the situation even worse. "They didn't make one comment on the intercom; didn't say, 'Stay calm, everything's OK,'" one rider said to CBS. "It just did not happen, which I thought was appalling."
Another passenger commented "We actually found out through Twitter, that's how passengers found out what happened,"
Frustrated evening commuters were left dealing with the consequences of the train accident hours later.
The Penn Station tracks and infrastructure are owned and maintained by Amtrak.
Another Train Derailment Accident Occurs
Riders at Penn Station are becoming all too familiar with train derailments and subsequent headaches. Not two weeks prior, an Amtrak train derailed at Penn Station and sideswiped an NJ Transit train.
"Awful, second time in less than two weeks, crowded train, I've been on train almost two hours to go six miles," one commuter commented, according to CBS New York.
The train accidents occurring so close together is drawing criticism from riders. "Welcome to Amtrak. American infrastructure is in terrible shape," one commuter said.
Another commented, "It's pretty concerning because you would think in a city like New York, they would be more on top of these things,"
Amtrak said it was investigating the recent derailment, and commented that the two accidents appear unrelated.
According to CBS New York, lawmakers are looking towards the $23 billion Gateway Project to improve travel conditions. Among other things, the project would add tunnels under the Hudson and give Amtrak the means to repair tunnels damaged by Superstorm Sandy. However, some legislators, including U.S. Sens. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), say that budget cuts under the Trump administration could threatening funding.
"Delay in getting Gateway done is not an option for the thousands of riders who depend on safe, reliable rail service in and out of New York City," said Menendez.
Parker Waichman comments that recent train accidents are not limited to Penn Station. In fact, a Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) train derailed in early 2017. More than 100 people were injured; fortunately, most of the injuries were minor. Another LIRR train accident occurred in October 2016, injuring about two dozen people. The train crash happened when an LIRR train struck work train.
In March 2017, a CSX freight train derailed in Newburgh, New York. The locomotive collided with an equipment loader stuck on the tracks.
A deadly train accident occurred in September 2016, when a New Jersey Transit Train crashed into a Hoboken station. One person died and more than 100 were injured. Investigators later determined that the train engineer suffered from undiagnosed sleep apnea. Individuals with sleep apnea stop breathing several times per night while sleeping. The loss of oxygen can affect a person's daily activities. Needless to say, this condition can lead to severe consequences when the patient operates vehicles or other heavy machinery. LIRR has started testing its train engineers for sleep apnea.
Legal Help for Train Accident Victims
Parker Waichman has decades of experience representing train accident and other accident victims. If you or someone you know was injured in a train accident, you may have valuable legal rights. Our personal injury attorneys offer free, no-obligation case evaluations. For more information, fill out our online form or call 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529).