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Amtrak: Debris from CSX train caused accident


ORISKANY, N.Y. (WKTV) - An Amtrak passenger train hit debris from a CSX train Sunday afternoon causing the cars to side-swipe each other, according to an Amtrak spokesperson. The debris punctured the Amtrak car's fuel tank causing fuel to spill onto the tracks.

About 500 gallons of diesel fuel spilled onto the tracks, creating a potentially dangerous environment situation. Hazmat crews and Department of Environmental Conservation representatives where on the scene until early evening Sunday.
The accident happened 12:15 p.m. about a mile from River Street in Oriskany, near the border of Whitestown.

The investigation into the debris is continuing. It is not clear if the CSX train was moving or standing still on the tracks. According to one passenger on board, the train was sitting still.

Passenger: I was "thinking it was going to explode!"
About 100 passengers were on board Amtrak train number 63, which was traveling north from New York City to Toronto. As the train struck the debris, passengers said they became very frightened.

"There was an announcement to exit the train immediately, the train stopped, there was a lot of smoke, a lot of confusion, diesel fuel everywhere, " said Roger Roth of Montgomery.

The passengers safely exited the train and were transported to Union Station in Utica via fire department buses. No injures were reported from the accident.

Trains delayed state-wide
The Amtrak spokesperson also said that trains leaving from Union Station going to other cities in the state and elsewhere were delayed for hours. Five train itineraries were affected, one train being delayed for more than eight hours.

Police and fire agencies from Whitesboro and Oriskany responded to the accident and remained on the scene until just before 6:00 p.m.

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