Empire Builder Derails in Montana, 3 Dead and Several Injured
Tragic news coming of Liberty County, Montana yesterday as 3 passengers were killed and dozens others injured in a Amtrak derailment.
The Empire Builder was in route to Portland/Seattle when 8 cars derailed near Joplin, Montana which is just south of the Canadian boarder or 200 miles north of Helena, yesterday around 4 pm according to CNN.
With an estimate of 141 passengers and 16 crew members, initial reports were that at least 50 passengers were injured.
A spokesperson said that rescuers from six counties were on hand to help at the scene and as many as five hospitals were on standby to deal with those that were injured.
Amtrak released the following statement:
"We are deeply saddened to learn local authorities are now confirming that three people have lost their lives as a result of this accident. There are also reported injuries among the passengers and crew members travelling on the train."
Crews continue to be on the scene as the investigation as to what happened, takes place.
With a long history, The Empire Builder has been in service since 1929 and was part of the Great Northern Railway. In 1971, Amtrak took over the rail service and the route continues to this day.
The Empire Builder has a daily route from Chicago to Portland/Seattle making stops in Harve and Whitefish here in Montana. Known for it's views, and changing scenery, it's been a popular amongst travelers for many years. Although it's seen a decline with the pandemic, the number of passengers in 2020 were still in the hundreds of thousands.