NTSB: 28 passengers unaccounted for after deadly Amtrak collision
(6/25) — 2229 PDT — LOVELOCK, Nev. — Investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board said 28 people on board an Emeryville-bound Amtrak train were still unaccounted for after a semi-truck collided with several train cars Friday afternoon.
Six people were killed in the fiery accident, authorities said.
NTSB spokesperson Earl Weener told reporters during a nighttime briefing Saturday that the agency was still trying to track down 28 passengers who had purchased tickets but never boarded the train, escaped harm and did not check in with first-responders, or were killed in the accident.
Weener said the unaccounted passenger count did not signify an increase in the death toll from the accident.
The casualty count included four passengers on-board the train, an Amtrak conductor and the driver of the semi-truck who inexplicably veered his big-rig into the side of the California Zephyr train, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported Saturday night.
Investigators revealed today that the truck was owned by John Davis Trucking, a firm based in Battle Mountain, Nev. The unidentified driver of the truck attempted to brake before he collided with the fourth car of the Amtrak train.
NTSB investigators found 350 feet of black skid marks leading to the wreckage, and suspect the driver tried to stop the truck before the accident, Weener said.
Dozens of passengers were injured in the collision when three train cars burst into flames. The injured were sent to hospitals in Fallon, Nev., Reno and other local medical centers.
An Amtrak spokesperson said the train was carrying 204 passengers and 14 crew members from Chicago to Emeryville.
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