4 Dead, 17 Hurt When Train Hits Texas Parade for Veterans - News - @ JEMS.com


4 Dead, 17 Hurt When Train Hits Texas Parade for Veterans

Seven others are in critical condition

 

 
 
 

JUAN CARLOS LLORCA and TERRY WALLACE, Associated Press | | Thursday, November 15, 2012


VIDEOS

Multimedia Thumb

Four Dead in Texas Train, Parade Float Crash

Train crashes into parade float carrying wounded veterans.
more >


Multimedia Thumb

Audio: Midland, TX Fatal Train Accident

Four dead, 17 hurt, after train crashes into parade float.
more >





MIDLAND, Texas (AP) — Wounded U.S. military veterans leapt for their lives just before a freight train struck their parade in rural Texas, killing four people and injuring 16, and federal officials rushed to the scene Friday to piece together why it happened.

About two dozen veterans and their spouses had been sitting on the parade float, set up on the back of a flatbed truck decorated with American flags. Many seemed to panic as the train's horn blared, said Patricia Howle, who was waiting in her car at a nearby traffic light.

"I was on the phone, and I just started screaming," she told The Associated Press after Thursday afternoon's crash. "The truck was on the other side of the train, but I did see the panic on the faces of the people and saw some of them jump off."

Police said the first truck with veterans safely crossed the tracks, but the second truck's trailer was still on the crossing as the Union Pacific locomotive approached.

The U.S. marked Veterans Day earlier this week, and the parade was part of an event to honor wounded veterans.

A preliminary investigation indicates the crossing gate and lights were working, said Union Pacific spokesman Tom Lange, though he didn't know if the train crew saw the float approaching.

"There is going to be a very thorough investigation," Lange said. "It's obviously a very tragic incident." He said the train crew did not sustain any injuries but would be offered counseling.

Two people died at the scene, while two others died at Midland Memorial Hospital, City of Midland spokesman Ryan Stout said. Six people remained hospitalized Friday, including one in critical condition.

"It was a horrible accident to watch happen right in front of me," said Daniel Quinonez, who was in traffic that had been stopped to allow the parade to pass. "I just saw the people on the semi-truck's trailer panic, and many started to jump off the trailer. But it was too late for many of them because the train impacted the trailer so fast," he said.

The events were organized by Show Of Support, a local veterans group. Its president, Terry Johnson, did not immediately return an email for comment and his phone number was unlisted. The phone rang unanswered at the group's offices.

The chairwoman of the National Transportation Safety Board, Deborah Hersman, said Friday on NBC that the train was equipped with a forward-facing camera whose footage could help in the investigation.

"That will give us some video images if it survived the crash, and we can download it, as well as recorders on the train," Hersman said. "We're going to be looking at the signals ... and making sure that the gates and lights were coming down."

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta "was deeply saddened by news of the tragic accident involving veterans heroes and their spouses in Midland," Pentagon spokesman George Little said in a statement.

___

Terry Wallace reported from Dallas. Associated Press writer James Beltran also contributed to this report from Dallas.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.
 



Related Links:


Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Four Dead in Texas Train, Parade Float Crash



Audio: Midland, TX Fatal Train Accident


Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: News, Mass Casualty Incidents, Texas parade crash, Midland Parade Crash

 
What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Buyer's Guide Featured Companies

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS

Get JEMS in Your Inbox

 

Fire EMS Blogs


Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

 

EMS Airway Clinic

Improving Survival from Cardiac Arrest Using ACD-CPR + ITD

Using active compression-decompression CPR with an ITD has been shown to improve 1-year survival from cardiac arrest by 33%.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Philadelphia Fire Department Apologizes for Medic’s Jab at Police

Union head calls photos a slap in the face of officers.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

D.C. Fire and EMS Crews Blame New Technology for Patient’s Death

Delayed response blamed on recurring dispatch problems.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Suspect Steals, Crashes Maryland Ambulance

One killed, others injured in Prince George’s County crash.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Truck Strikes Pedestrians in Scotland

Six killed in downtown Glasgow.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Tennessee Trench Rescue

Worker pulled from Roane County worksite.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Time’s Ebola Firefighters

Doctors, nurses and others saluted for fighting virus.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

LMA MAD Nasal™

Needle-free intranasal drug delivery.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

VividTrac offered by Vivid Medical - EMS Today 2013

VividTrac, affordable high performance video intubation device.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

The AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher Conversion Kit - EMS Today 2013

AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher all-hazards preparedness & response tool
Watch It >


More Product Videos >