Metro North trains collide in Fairfield, many injured

Train passenger Rob Oliver of New Haven took this photo after getting off one of the trains and posted it on Twitter.

9:50 PM — “This is a very serious incident as you are probably all aware,” Gov. Malloy said during a Friday night press conference near the scene of Friday’s train collision.
He said 60 people were transported to hospitals.
Malloy said five people are critically injured with one in “very critical condition.”
Malloy said the area will be secured for national investigation that could lead into tomorrow morning.
“We’re most concerned with the injured, and then reopening the system,” Malloy said.
Gov. Malloy said the state is working with the MTA and Amtrak on a response.
“We want to get people home,” he said.
There is “pretty devastating damage” to the rail cars with a side ripped off and “extensive damage” to front, Malloy said.
“We have no reason to believe it was anything but an accident but obviously that is something that needs to be looked at,” Malloy said.
He said he promises a “full and robust” investigation and said “nothing can be ruled out, but nothing is being promoted as a cause yet.”
Malloy said travelers should anticipate that train service will end at Bridgeport and South Norwalk at least through Monday. This includes Amtrak service between New York and Boston.
“In a perfect world, we would be up and running by Monday morning, but I’m not saying that,” Malloy said.
He said the factors that impact future travel are how long the investigation takes and how long it takes to replace tracks that have been torn up.
Malloy said that at least 10 people have been released from the hospital for their injuries, and expects that number to grow.9:26 PM — Gov. Malloy “hopeful” regular service will resume by Monday. Federal investigators are on their way to the scene.

9:22 PM — Gov. Malloy now addressing media, says there are 60 injuries from the train collision. Five are seriously injured.

9:20 PM — In 1988 in near Mount Vernon East on the New Haven Line, one empty train ran into the back of another empty train, killing an engineer, Jim Cameron of the CT Commuter Council tells us.

9:04 PM — “I have no memory in decades of anything close to this happening, ” Jim Cameron, chairman of the CT Metro-North / Shore Line East Rail Commuter Council said.
This appears to be the worst train accident in more than 35 years.
This appears to be the worst Connecticut rail crash since two trains collided, killing two, on the New Canaan Line, a branch line that is just one track, off the New Haven line, in October 1976. The head-on collision also injured 29. The engineer of the north-bound train was blamed for the accident by the state DOT.
The main New Haven Line has four tracks.

8:50 PM — The National Transportation Safety Board is sending investigators from Washington, D.C., to scene in Fairfield and Bridgeport, U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal just told News 12 Connecticut.

8:48 PM — New Haven Line service is only running between Grand Central and South Norwalk tonight.

8:35 PM — Officials on the scene are now reporting that 49 passenger and train crew members were injured, Fairfield Police chief just told Hersam Acorn’s John Kovach, who is on the scene. Twenty two were transported to one hospital, 27 to another.

8:31 PM — Governor Malloy is headed to the scene, according to Hersam Acorn’s John Kovach, who is on the scene.

8:22 PM — Bus service is being provided from Stamford eastbound, according to a passenger on a train delayed by the collision. Details are still sketch and if you are traveling on the trains this evening, it is best to listen for announcements at the stations or on the trains. And if you can, make other arrangements.

8:17 PM — According to MTA spokesman Aaron Donovan, it is way too early to assess whether or not there would be train service to grand central tomorrow. Earlier, local police said it would likely be suspended from at least Bridgeport to Grand Central.

He confirmed that there are approximately two dozen people injured and approximately three are serious injuries. Police on the scene have said there are four serious injuries. (See below.)

8:15 PM — Two MTA engineers are among the four seriously injured in the Friday rush hour train collision in Fairfield, according to police.

MTA Police, who are now overseeing the accident investigation, are interviewing them at the hospital.

The National Transportation Safety Board and the U.S. Secret Service have also been notified of the crash, according to officials.

The collision happened on the Fairfield-Bridgeport line, according to Fairfield Police Chief Gary MacNamara.

The cause of the collision remains undetermined, Fairfield Police Lt. James Perez said. He called it “pretty serious.”

8:13 PM – With the closure of Metro North’s New Haven Line between South Norwalk and New Haven, the Waterbury Line, which serves the Valley, will not have access to the main line and Grand Central Terminal.

7:59 PM — Twenty two were injured, four seriously injured, according to Bridgeport Police. All 22 were transported to hospital.

7:57 PM — Correction: Metro-North Train service suspended between South Norwalk and New Haven. Amtrak service suspended between New York and Boston.

7:54 PM — Amtrak service has been suspended between New York and Boston until further notice, according to Bridgeport Police.

7:49 PM — There will be no trains to Grand Central on Saturday, Bridgeport Police told Hersam Acorn’s John Kovach, who is on the scene in Fairfield. It is not known how far east that suspension could last.

7:32 PM — Here’s what a Metro-North spokesman just told Hersam Acorn’s Susan Shultz:

At approximately 610 p.m., eastbound train was derailed at fairfield metro station, the derailment caused a collision with a Westbound train. There were no fatalities and no reports of life threatening injuries, but multiple non-life threatening injuries.

New Haven Line train service is suspended in both directions between Stamford and New Haven until further notice.

7:26 PM — At least 22 passengers have been transported to area hospitals, according to emergency officials.

There are ambulances reporting to the scene from as far as Waterbury. Up to 300 passengers were aboard the trains, according to the Connecticut Post. “At this stage, we don’t know if this is a mechanical failure, an accident or something deliberate,” said Fairfield Police spokesman told that newspaper.

There are reports of many “walking wounded” around the tracks near Commerce Drive in Fairfield.

Surface roads in the area have heavy traffic. Exit 25 on Interstate 95 in both directions are closed.

7PM — Many rail passengers have been injured in a train collision Friday in Fairfield. Metro North Railroad spokesman has called it a “horrible accident.”

A westbound train with passengers collided with a disabled train near Commerce Drive in Fairfield, according to reports.

At the scene, there are reports of many passengers walking around wounded. Many ambulances are reporting to the scene.

Friday evening Metro North Railroad service along the New Haven Line is disrupted, mostly east of South Norwalk. There are several injuries being reported at the scene.

Trains from Grand Central are not going past South Norwalk, according to the railroad and commuters. Trains are still traveling to New Canaan, according to reports.

More information will be posted as it becomes available.

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