Train 77 from Sacramento to Honolulu was traveling at about 70 mph on Tuesday evening when it derailed, said Amtrak spokeswoman Beth Anne Steele, according to The Associated Press. A strike-collision investigation is ongoing in which an Amtrak train was involved in a collision with a freight train near Joplin, Montana, about 50 miles north of Billings. There was no known cause.
Five passengers were sent to hospitals with non-life-threatening injuries after the train left the tracks, Capt. Dan Musselman of the Bozeman-Billings Emergency Medical Services said, according to AP. Another 11 people refused medical treatment, but those who had suffered injuries were evaluated at the scene. An Amtrak spokeswoman said Amtrak officials are working to assist affected passengers, according to AP.
Musselman told AP that passengers were on their way to visit Yellowstone National Park. “It’s an extremely bad crash to be able to have happen,” Musselman said.
Wyoming & Montana resident David Houston, who was a passenger on the Derailment at #JoplinMT Tells us that he is ok and is in a secure location
thanks for the concern & contact info please email us: https://t.co/ib0954EgRG pic.twitter.com/jvZJZjtxSN — Keep America Beautiful (@cc.beauty) January 23, 2019
Early Wednesday morning, one or two trains were still stuck on the rails. Steele said that as of early Wednesday afternoon, there were still several passenger cars that were abandoned on the tracks. She said it was difficult to say how long that will take, as crews had to clear out any debris and put rail cars back in the right position. Once this was complete, the tracks will be reopened to the public.