A commuter train crashed into a truck and derailed Tuesday, injuring dozens of people in farmland northwest of Los Angeles. (Ventura County Star)
At least 28 people were injured, including four critically, Tuesday morning when a Metrolink commuter train collided with a tractor-trailer truck on the tracks in Ventura County, northwest of Los Angeles.
Oxnard police Sgt. Denise Shadinger said the crash was reported at 5:44 a.m. Shadinger said the truck became fully engulfed in flames. Authorities are describing the scene as a multi-casualty incident.
Authorities at a morning news conference said many of the victims were treated for head and extremity injuries. The train, which has a cruising speed of about 79 miles per hour, was traveling ‘significantly’ slower at the time of impact, an official said.
« The conductor noticed the car early and established emergency protocol. He anticipated the crash from a far distance, » Oxnard Fire Battalion Chief Sergio Martinez said.
The train carrying 51 passengers was heading from Ventura County to Los Angeles. The stretch of track 65 miles from Los Angeles where the collision occurred was straight, and that allowed the conductor to see the truck on the tracks and begin braking, fire officials said.
A Ventura County fire official told Fox News that the driver of the tractor trailer survived the crash and fled the scene. He was apprehended less than a mile from the crash site, the official said.
The collision toppled three passenger cars. A fourth car is derailed but remains upright, along with the engine. The scene is in Oxnard, about 65 miles northwest of Los Angeles.
A news helicopter is showing firefighters treating numerous people at the scene. Tarps were lying on the street and firefighters were treating victims. Little was left of the truck but scorched and mangled wreckage — some debris was in a nearby intersection and some close to the tracks.
VC Line 102 to Los Angeles is stopped between Oxnard Camarillo due to striking a vehicle on the tracks. Updates to follow.
— Metrolink (@Metrolink) February 24, 2015
Metrolink’s website says the train was on a run from Ventura County to Los Angeles.
Emergency vehicles could be seen treating some passengers at the scene, while other passengers could be seen being wheeled on stretchers.
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Feb. 24: Three cars of a Metrolink commuter train have derailed and tumbled onto their sides after a collision with a truck on tracks in Ventura County northwest of Los Angeles.
The Los Angeles Times reported that in 2008, a train traveling on the same route was involved in a crash that killed 25 and injured 135.
The National Transportation Safety board announced it was sending a team to investigate the crash.
The Associated Press contributed to this report