An Amtrak train derailed over an intestate crossing south of Tacoma, Washington on Monday morning, killing at least three people and injuring around 100. Transportation officials revealed Monday that the train was going 80 mph in a 30-mph zone.
"State transportation officials say the train derailed near Mounts Road, about 40 miles south of Seattle, at about 8 a.m. Monday," Komono News reports. "Amtrak officials said the train was the No. 501, which operates between Seattle and Portland. The train had just begun using a new high-speed route Monday morning."
According to CBS News, authorities have confirmed that at least three people died from the derailment (early reports incorrectly put the number at six). Another 100 suffered injuries, four of them suffering "critical injuries," according to CHI Franciscan Health, the group that operates several of the hospitals in the region.
National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) officials said in a press conference late Monday that the train was going 80 mph in a 30-mph zone.
"The speed limit at the curve where the train crosses Interstate 5 is 30 miles per hour, said state transportation department spokeswoman Barbara LaBoe, while the speed limit on most of the track is 79 mph," the Seattle Times reports. "She said speed-limit signs are posted two miles before the lowered speed zone and then just before the zone."
"Pierce County Ed Troyer said there were major injuries — some people were taken to the hospital while others remained trapped on the train," Q13 Fox reported before officials revealed specific numbers. An early report by CBS News noted that first responders were treating the derailment "as a mass casualty incident."
Footage from the incident showed at least one of the train cars lying upside down on I-5, while another remained hanging off of the bridge over the interstate. Below is an image of the derailment released by Washington State Patrol.
Below is an image of the dangling car and gridlock on I-5 tweeted by WSDOT Tacoma Traffic, which warned, "All SB lanes of I-5 blocked near Mounts Road in Pierce County due to derailed train car. Avoid area!"
According to CBS, one of the passengers, Chris Karnes, the chair of the Pierce Transit Advisory Board , says the train derailed in DuPont and that at least seven cars derailed. "The emergency doors were not functioning correctly, which forced passengers to kick out train windows to exit," CBS reports. Karnes posted the following tweet:
This article has been updated as new information has emerged.