News

Actions

Probable cause of fatal Amtrak derailment was speed, distraction: AP

Posted at 12:02 PM, May 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-17 17:43:52-04

WASHINGTON — Federal regulators say the probable cause of a fatal Amtrak derailment was an engineer speeding into a turn because he was distracted by radio transmissions. A contributing cause was the lack of a speed control system.

The National Transportation Safety Board voted Tuesday to accept 13 findings they said led to the derailment in Philadelphia last year that killed eight people.

Investigators say engineer Brandon Bostian's attention was diverted by a disabled commuter train nearby that had been hit by a rock.

They believe Bostian might have been disoriented and sped up on a dangerous curve before reaching the straight portion of track on May 12, 2015.

Investigators also said injuries were exacerbated by inadequate requirements for passenger protection. They say the train's emergency windows dislodged, killing four people who were ejected.