Witnesses describe aftermath of deadly Metro-North train derailment

Metro North derailment
Emergency crews help injured passengers after Metro-North train derailed near the Spuyten Duyvil station in the Bronx.
Credit: Getty Images

Metro’s original story can be read here.

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Only a few passengers could walk away unassisted from a fatal train derailment that left dozens injured in the Bronx Sunday morning, according to a witness.

Mike Gallo was walking his dog when he saw passengers on stretchers, wearing neck braces and, in some cases, being carried from the scene of a southbound Metro-North train that derailed on the Hudson line about 7:30 a.m.

“There were a few that were lucky enough walk away from it, but I’m sure these memories and tragedy will live with them forever,” said Gallo, who works at a design marketing strategy firm on Wall Street.

He takes the same train line to work on weekdays.

Five of the train’s seven cars derailed along a long curve some 100 yards from the Spuyten Duyvil station, according to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

Four people died and 67 were injured, 11 seriously, during the incident, NYPD Sgt. Thomas Antonetti said.

Rebecca Press Schwartz watched emergency personnel get to the scene from a Manhattan park across the water.

“The first thing we saw were firefighters climbing on and around the derailed cars trying to provide access and, after a few minutes, we saw people in civilian cars walking around the (train) cars who seemed to be passengers who got out or people who were in the station,” Schwartz said.

Schwartz said she heard a lot of sirens and NYPD helicopters arrive.

The cause of the derailment is under investigation, police said. The National Transportation Safety Board has sent a team to investigate.

Gallo said the curve was dangerous, but didn’t speculate as to the cause of the derailment.

“We’ve all seen trains derail,” he said.

Gallo said he would take the 1 Train to work tomorrow. He said he was still shaking hours after the incident.

“I feel lucky it wasn’t a Monday,” he said. “It would be a lot more commuters on the scene.”

Follow Anna Sanders on Twitter: @AnnaESanders

Follow Danielle Tcholakian on Twitter: @danielleiat

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