Authorities would not speak on the number of injured or the extent of their injuries.
Eight cars from Amtrak’s Empire Builder train 7/27 headed westbound from Chicago to Seattle/Portland derailed near Joplin, Montana, around 4 p.m. local time, injuring an undisclosed number of passengers, Amtrak said in a statement. The train consisted of two locomotives and 10 cars.
There were approximately 141 passengers and 16 crew members on board, Amtrak said in an additional statement Sunday, clarifying previous figures provided.
“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. Amtrak is working with the local authorities to transport those who were injured to medical care, and to safely evacuate everyone else at the scene,” said the statement.
Amtrak has activated an Incident Response Team and “are sending emergency personnel and Amtrak leadership to the scene to help support our passengers, our employees and their families with their needs,” the statement said.
Individuals with questions about their friends and family aboard the train should call 800-523-9101, the railway said.
“Traveling between Chicago and the Pacific Northwest along major portions of the Lewis and Clark Trail, the mighty Empire Builder takes you on an exciting adventure through majestic wilderness, following in the footsteps of early pioneers,” the website adds.
This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.