Hoboken rail crash: Train 'rose into air' after colliding with concrete block, say witnesses

Train was travelling too fast, say passengers, as they describe disaster that left more than 100 people wounded

Rob Crilly
New York
Thursday 29 September 2016 15:08 BST
(Getty Images)

Witnesses say the passenger train that crashed in New Jersey was travelling so fast it became airborne as it hit concrete blocks at Hoboken Station, colliding with the terminal roof.

A New Jersey Transit worker said it sounded like a bomb going off.

"It went through the bumper block, through the air, through the depot," Mike Larson told CNN.

He added that the train should have stopped 20ft short of the buffers but failed to do so.

"It was going considerably faster than it should have been at the terminal," he said.

Three people are reported to have died and more than 100 people have been injured, acording to transport officials.

Nancy Bido, a passenger, told WNBC-TV in New York that the train did not slow down as it arrived into the station.

Video shows aftermath of Hoboken crash

"It just never stopped. It was going really fast and the terminal was basically the brake for the train," is how she described the accident.

The train came to a halt in a covered area between the station's indoor waiting area and the platform.

A metal roof collapsed on to the front carriages, apparently after being hit by the airborne first car.

"It simply did not stop," WFAN anchor John Minko, who witnessed the crash, told 1010 WINS. "It went right through the barriers and into the reception area."

The train was crowded with rush-hour commuters, many of them standing, when the train crashed.

Lauren Berlamaino, a passenger, told CBS2: “We were pulling into the station, I was thinking we’re not stopping.

"The next thing I know, my head went forward, I hit the seat and come back to and there was screaming.”

A woman who have her name as Nasima told reporters she arrived at the station with her husband soon after the crash.

"At first we didn't see injured people but they just started coming, one after the other," she said.

"There was just so much blood."

A spokeswoman for New Jersey Transit said the train left Spring Valley, New York, at 7:23am and the crash happened at 8.45.

Hoboken Terminal was the scene of a crash in 2011, when 30 were injured after a Path commuter train ran into buffers on a Sunday morning.

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