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NJ Transit train derails at Penn Station, officials say

A NJ Transit train derailed at Penn Station

A NJ Transit train derailed at Penn Station on Monday morning, April 3, 2017, officials said. Photo Credit: Ryan Davison via Twitter; Christa Lopez

A NJ Transit train derailed at Penn Station on Monday morning, officials said, just more than a week after an Amtrak train derailed at the same station.

A Northeast Corridor train, #3926, from Trenton had a “slow speed derailment” as it arrived at Penn Station on Track 9 at about 9 a.m., NJ Transit said. 

There were 1,200 passengers on the train, the agency said. Three people were taken to Lenox Hill Hospital with non-life threatening injuries, per the FDNY. Two others were treated for minor injuries at the scene.

Ryan Davison, 30, of Princeton, was a passenger on the derailed train.

“We heard a loud bang and the train car we were in jerked,” he said in an emailed statement. “As soon as it happened I knew what it was.”

Davison said he was at first told to move to the back of the train, but was then instructed to walk back toward the derailment to exit the train. He said he saw several cars derailed. 

Davison felt fine at first, he said, but his back and neck hurt later on in the day and he was planning to get it checked out. 

“I feel blessed that I am okay and hope everyone else is too,” he said.

All NJ Transit rail service was suspended in and out of Penn Station until about 12:30 p.m. Limited service was then restored on the Northeast Corridor and New Jersey Coast Line. Raritan Valley service remained suspended between New York and New Jersey, and MidTown Direct trains were still being diverted to Hoboken.

The railroad later announced the Northeast Corridor and New Jersey Coast Line will run on a holiday schedule Tuesday, among other service changes.

Amtrak was also delayed due to the derailment, officials said, and the Long Island Rail Road was forced to adjust its Monday evening and Tuesday morning schedules.

As commuters began to flood Penn Station late Monday afternoon, some admitted they left work early in order to get ahead of the delays and possible cancellations.

"I had to leave work much earlier than normal," said Jimmy Lee, 40, who added that "fortunately" for him, his train was fine.

Kim Waymer, 56, of Baldwin, also left work early after she got an alert on her phone about possible delays. 

"This is horrible," she said after her train was canceled. "How come they couldn't get [the derailment] cleared by 5 [p.m.]?"

Acting MTA Chairman Fernando Ferrer said when derailments like this happen, it affects all three companies. 

“It’s certainly not an acceptable condition," he said. “Even though Amtrak owns it, we all dwell in that same place and travel over that same track. When something bad happens like this, it will affect a lot of people.”

Mitchell Travon, 32, of Hempstead, said that while he was upset that his train was canceled, he wasn't all that surprised.

"This is the new normal," said Travon, who is a teacher in Harlem. "There's nothing you can really do...You just gotta roll with the punches."

An Amtrak train derailed and sideswiped a NJ Transit train at Penn Station on March 24. There were no major injuries in that incident.

With Vincent Barone and Ivan Pereira


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