US teen keeps cool after train severs legs

A 17-year-old US honour student has remarkably kept his cool while on the phone to emergency services moments after his legs were severed by a train.

Audio from Jacob Ohl's ordeal on Thursday (local time) has been released, and he's heard calmly telling the operator about what happened to him.

He was alone when he was hit by a northbound train in Lilburn in the state of Georgia.

Jacob managed to call 911 for help and told them seemingly without distress that: "um, I just got hit by a train".

He goes on to try to describe to the operator where he was.

Asked what part of his body was hurt, Jacob says it is his legs: "I think it cut them off".

"I was just walking up to [the train]...I like fell under it almost."

He also managed to give them the name and number of his mother. 

When emergency services arrived, they applied tourniquets to his legs to stop the bleeding - an action police say likely saved his life.

His legs were severed completely from the knee down.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to support Jacob's recovery claims he's now in physiotherapy and showered with cards signed by classmates, good wishes and a visit from his principal.

"He is still not ready for visitors as the pain is nearly unbearable at times, but in general, his attitude is positive and he seems ready to move forward," an update on the page reads.

The family says they're not "scrambling" to find a home which can accommodate a wheelchair, and have been given a "crash course" in dealing with insurance companies.

The page has raised more than US$36,000 of the US$40,000 goal.