At least 7 people were killed, over 200 injured and an unknown number of people are missing.
-THE NTSB SAYS THE TRAIN WAS SPEEDING?
The NTSB says the train was traveling at 106 mph, more than double the speed it should have been traveling as it was rounding the curb in the Frankford Junction in Northeast Philadelphia. They also say the engineer pulled the emergency brakes which slowed the train to 102 mph.
-POLICE TRIED TALKING TO THE ENGINEER BUT HE WOULDN’T SAY MUCH?
Yes, friends have identified the engineer as 32-year old Brandon Bostian of New York. When police spoke to him at the hospital he told them he didn’t remember how fast he was going and then declined further comment and requested a lawyer. The NTSB says they’re giving him some time to steady himself from this terrible event before they talk to him.
-WHY ARE THEY ASKING FOR HIS CELLPHONE?
They want to know if Bostian was distracted at the time of the accident. They want to know if he was talking, texting or using an app on this phone during the accident. Engineers aren’t allowed to carry or use their phones
-THEY’VE RECOVERED THE BLACK BOXES?
The black boxes have been taken to Delaware. It could be as soon as a few days before they announce a cause.
-THIS COULD VERY EASILY HAVE BEEN PREVENTED?
Yes, there is as an automated train speed and braking system that if it had been put into place would have prevented this and other accidents. However, it’s important to note that on the day after the derailment, house Republicans voted down more funding for upgrades and safety mechanisms for Amtrak.