Injuries as US passenger train derails

  • 06/10/2015
Officials guard the tracks where a passenger train derailed in Vermont (Reuters)
Officials guard the tracks where a passenger train derailed in Vermont (Reuters)

A passenger train has derailed in the US state of Vermont, injuring seven people, none seriously, according to officials.

Five train cars, two of which went over an embankment, ran off the tracks in the small town of Northfield, Vermont, at 10:30am on Monday (local time).

Railway company Amtrak, attributed the derailment to reports of a rockslide on the tracks, and said in a statement that there were no reports of life-threatening injuries.

Governor Peter Shumlin said seven of the passengers have been hospitalised, one air-lifted out and the rest transported by ambulance.

"We were very lucky that there was no loss of life," he said.

Local media reported passengers with neck, back, shoulder and wrist injuries and mild headaches.

Shumlin said the train was travelling below the speed limit of 95 kilometres per hour.

"There's no wrongdoing here. There's no evidence of negligence," he said, adding that the track had been renovated a few years earlier.

A freight train passed the same section of track without incident the night before, Dan Delabruere, director of Vermont's rail transport office, said on Monday.

The train was part of Amtrak's "Vermonter" service, which passes through major US northeastern cities on its way from Washington DC to St Albans, Vermont, near the Canadian border.

The Vermont route is popular this time of the year with tourists hoping to see the region's famous fall foliage.

The accident comes five months after the derailment of a train in Philadelphia that left eight dead and more than 200 injured in May, after the train entered a curve at 170 kilometres per hour, more than twice the permitted speed.