It’s ten hours later and transit officials have not yet announced a cause for last night’s Amtrak disaster in Philadelphia, which has claimed six lives at this writing. The crash occurred where the track curves through the Port Richmond neighborhood and it’s the site of a 1943 train crash that killed 79 passengers. That crash remains one of the deadliest in US history. Amtrak issued a statement early this morning:
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.
Rail service may not resume between NYC and Philadelphia for several days.
RELATED: Shortly after the crash Donald Trump took to Twitter to declare that only he can fix the nation’s crumbling infrastructure. Trump was immediately castigated as a crass opportunist by all sides, but especially on right wing sites where talk of infrastructure spending is akin to communism.