Washington train derailment survivor: ‘All of a sudden things st - KPTV - FOX 12

Washington train derailment survivor: ‘All of a sudden things started to get dark’

Posted: Updated: Dec 18, 2017 04:02 PM
Image: KCPQ Image: KCPQ
TACOMA, WA (KPTV/AP) -

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee is calling on people to embrace the victims and their families involved in a deadly train derailment south of Tacoma.

The Associated Press reported six people were killed in the derailment over southbound Interstate 5 near DuPont on Monday morning, but Washington State Patrol confirmed only three people had died by late Monday afternoon. Around 100 people were taken to the hospital, some with critical injuries. 

The train was heading to Portland. 

While the cause of the derailment remains under investigation, Inslee said to reserve judgment and focus on offering support.

“Washingtonians, we can wrap our arms around these families and extend our hearts and our prayers to them,” Inslee said.

Survivors were taken to DuPont City Hall where they received treatment for minor injuries, reunited with family members or were given bus rides to another destination.

One man on the train told FOX 12 he took the ride because he was excited for its inaugural run.   

The section of track where the derailment occurred had just been upgraded as part of a $181 million project for a new faster route.

“When the cars started to carom on the side, it just started to tip, and then all of a sudden things stated to get dark, stuff started flying around, then I knew it was not good,” Anthony of Gig Harbor told FOX 12.

Another man who was driving on a highway alongside the train said he and his friend rushed to help the victims.

Daniel Konzelman told the Associated Press they saw train cars with the roofs ripped off or tipped upside down and a few vehicles on the roadway that were damaged.

He said they climbed into train cars and found injured passengers, some who were pinned underneath the train and others who appeared to be dead.

Konzelman said that if victims could move and seemed stable, he helped them climb out of the train. If they appeared seriously hurt, he tried to offer comfort by talking to them to calm them down.

Washington State Patrol reported the train had 12 cars and two engines, and 13 of them derailed. Five vehicles and two semis on the highway below were damaged by the derailment.

Deputies said some of the people in the vehicles on the highway sustained injuries, but they all survived. 

Copyright 2017 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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