Amtrak Northeast Regional Train Out of DC heading to NY Derails outside Philadelphia around 9:30pm

Update from Amtrak:

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of life from Amtrak Northeast Regional Train 188 that derailed north of Philadelphia Tuesday evening. We ask the news media to be respectful of our customers, our employees, and their families.

There were approximately 238 passengers and 5 crew members on board. Individuals with questions about their friends and family on this train should call the Amtrak Incident Hotline 800-523-9101. Amtrak has also established a Family Assistance Center to work closely with family and friends of individuals on the train. Local emergency responders are on the scene and an investigation is ongoing.

On Wednesday, May 13, modified Amtrak service will be provided between Washington and Philadelphia, Harrisburg and Philadelphia, and New York and Boston. There will be no Amtrak service between New York and Philadelphia, but New Jersey Transit will honor Amtrak tickets between New York City and Trenton.

Other Amtrak Service between New York and Albany-Rensselaer; New Haven and Springfield, Mass., and other points will operate.”

Update from @Amtrak:

“Injuries reported in train 188 incident, all service canceled this evening btwn NY/Philly.”

@Amtrak tweets:

“We are aware of the derailment of Northeast Regional train 188 north of Philadelphia and will provide updates as they become available.”

A local Philadelphia News Station ABC6 reports:

“Action News is being told 8 to 10 cars derailed. Approximately 200 people were on board when the train derailed around 9:30 p.m. Tuesday.”

12 Comment

  • justinbc

    I saw this late last night, hope nobody on here lost anyone in the incident. This is how my parents travel to DC, because my dad refuses to fly. I’m guessing with his paranoia they’ll now be driving the whole way, even though car wrecks are still infinitely more likely to happen.

    • Ally

      My Dad was the same way — train all the way due to a fear of flying.
      Hope all the injured heal as quickly as possible.

  • Just yesterday I told my mom to take the train next visit. This is such an unlikely event, but still…..and I’ll just say how proud I am that Patrick Murphy was able to help people – he’s my boo!

    Not saying infrastructure is to blame, but I’ll never understand how infrastructure spending is always criticized when a shitty infrastructure system screws over rich people, too. When a bridge collapses or your train tracks fail, it hurts conservatives just as much.

    • 1) This is a tragic accident that has nothing to do with the condition of the tracks, and 2) the tracks are in great shape *because* they’re owned by a private entity, CSX, and merely leased to Amtrak. Compare that to the DC Metro, which catches on fire. I suspect Amtrak having their own tracks would look much more akin to Metro’s than CSX’s.

      • We have no idea yet what caused this. I absolutely wouldn’t rule out the tracks or anything else. Anecdotally, during my last return trip to DC on a Northeast Regional, we sat for over a half an hour in rural NJ while the engineer got out and inspected a stretch of track ahead of us (the conductors were very upfront about it on the PA system).

      • Amtrak does own the tracks on the Northeast Corridor–one of the few sets of tracks that Amtrak owns outright. Contrary to your assertion that CSX’s private nature incentivizes the firm to have a better safety record, CSX has many more derailments on its private lines than Amtrak does on any of its lines.

        Amtrak leases lines from private freight companies elsewhere in the country, which leads to poor service because freight has right of way throughout most of the country, but that’s an entirely separate issue from safety in the NEC.

      • You don’t know what caused it. neither do I, which is why I said it wasn’t necessarily to blame.

      • To jindc’s point that outside of whether infrastructure was to blame here, you cannot contest that infrastructure failures do not vastly prohibit improvement in rail travel. Outside of this tragic incident, it is rare that you can go a month without train delays because of other infrastructure-related issues on the Northeast Regional path.

        Maybe this will inspire our government(s) to seriously consider Japan’s offer to help us build high speed rail in the Northeast corridor. I doubt it, but one can hope.

        • +1

          I once sat on an Acela train for 8.5 hours (from DC to NY) because a thunderstorm knocked out half of the signals. It’s a fairly regular occurrence in the summer.

      • DM, you have your facts wrong.

  • I travel between DC and NYC all the time on Amtrak… very scary to see something like this happen. My thoughts go out to those affected by this incident.

  • I think the big take-away here is to sit in the rear cars of the train. It appears that derailments often involve the engine car and front cars.

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