Amtrak, CSX train collision in South Carolina leaves 2 dead, over 100 injured, officials say

Two Amtrak personnel were killed and over 100 others were injured when an Amtrak passenger train collided with a parked CSX freight train early Sunday just outside the capital of South Carolina, officials said.

The South Carolina Emergency Management Division said Amtrak 91 was traveling from New York to Miami when it collided with the CSX train in Cayce around 2:35 a.m.

“We have anywhere from scratches and bumps to more severe broken bones,” Lexington County spokesman Harrison Cahill told reporters.

Amtrak said in a statement the train’s lead engine derailed, as did some passenger cars that was carrying eight crew members and approximately 139 passengers on board. TV footage from the crash scene showed the aftermath of the collision, with the Amtrak engine on its side and its front crumpled.

Amtrak Train SC

Derailed Amtrak cars after a train traveling from New York to Miami collided with a CSX freight train in South Carolina.  (FOX News)

South Carolina Gov. said the two people killed in the crash were Amtrak personnel and 116 people were taken to area hospitals.

“We’ve been to the scene and I would ask this is a Sunday, everyone go to church and say a prayer for these people involved,” he told reporters.

Lexington County emergency officials responding to the scene where an Amtrak train collided with a CSX freight train in Cayce, South Carolina early Sunday morning.  (FOX News)

McMaster said the first engine of the freight train was “torn up,” while the engine on the Amtrak train is “barely recognizable.” The governor added that no one was on the CSX train at the time of teh crash, and the Amtrak train was estimated to be going 59 mph. 

“Two trains, that’s as forceful as can get,” he told reporters. 

Hospital officials told Fox News they have received nearly 90 patients from the crash, but most of which have been discharged already. Lexington Medical Center spokeswoman Jennifer Wilson said the facility received 27 patients from the crash, all of which had “minor injuries” and since been discharged.

Derailed Amtrak cars after a train traveling from New York to Miami collided with a CSX freight train in South Carolina.  (FOX News)

A spokesperson from Palmetto Health said they received 62 patients as a result of the crash at three of their facilities. The health care network said there are two patients that are expected to be admitted, but most are expected to be released after they are evaluated and treated.

“The thoughts of all our team members are with the family and friends of those injured in this accident,” Palmetto Health spokesperson Tammie Epps said. “Palmetto Health is coordinating with local authorities, Amtrak and the American Red Cross to assist these families in any way possible.”

No immediate information was available about the CSX train, but SCMED Public Information Officer Derrec Becker told reporters that officials are working to secure a fuel leak that resulted from the spill.


As of now, 5,000 gallons of diesel fuel has spilled and crews are trying to secure the leak, according to Becker.

“There is no danger to anyone in the nearby area of Lexington County,” Becker told “FOX & friends Weekend.”

The crash happened near a stretch of tracks by a rail yard about 10 miles south of Columbia, where several track spurs split off for freight cars to be unloaded.

Authorities said they haven’t determined if both trains were moving or if the Amtrak train was diverted on to a side track.

SC Map

The Amtrak train collided with a CSX freight train in Cayce, located just outside Columbia.  (FOX News)

“It appears to me that the CSX was on the track it was supposed to be on, a switch track,” the governor said. “They weren’t supposed to be meeting like that, that’s what it appears to me.”

Amtrak said that anyone with questions regarding passengers on the train can contact them at 1-800-523-9101.

South Carolina’s Red Cross chapter tweeted that emergency responders were at the scene. The people who weren’t hurt were taken in patrol cars to a shelter, Lexington County Sheriff’s spokesman Adam Myrick said.

“We know they are shaken up quite a bit. We know this is like nothing else they have ever been through. So we wanted to get them out of the cold, get them out of the weather – get them to a warm place,” Myrick said.

The National Transportation Safety Board said it was launching a “Go Team” to investigate the deadly crash.

President Trump was briefed on the train accident and is receiving regular updates, according to Deputy White House Press Secretary Lindsay Walters. 

“Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone that has been affected by this incident,” Walters added.

This is the third Amtrak crash since December. On Dec. 18, an Amtrak train derailed in Washington state, killing three people and injuring dozens more. Just last week, one persion in a truck died when an Amtrak crash carrying Republican members of Congress struck the vehicle at a crossing. Two other people in the vehicle were severely injured.

Fox News’  Bryan Llenas, Lucas Tomlinson, Terace Garnier, and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Travis Fedschun is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @travfed

Bradford Betz is an editor for Fox News. Follow him on Twitter @bradford_betz.

FOX News

Related Posts You Might Like: