(New Hyde Park, New York – October 8, 2016)
A 12-car Long Island Railroad commuter train carrying about 600 passengers collided with a LIRR work train just east of the New Hyde Park, NY train station Saturday night at about 9:00 P.M., EDT. The collision resulted in derailment of the train’s first three cars and injury to 29 passengers, of whom 11 required hospitalization, in the second metropolitan New York City-area commuter train crash within barely a week.
Nassau County, NY, Executive Ed Mangano told news media that the crash-related injuries, none of which were believed to be life-threatening, ranged “from broken bones to lacerations to cuts” after the as-yet unexplained crash.
The work train, which was obviously fouling the track that the passenger train was on, caught fire after the sideswiping collision.
The Saturday tragedy came on the heels of another serious NYC-area commuter train accident that occurred in Hoboken, NJ September 29, where one woman was killed and over 100 people injured as a New Jersey Transit commuter train failed to slow down and stop at a stub track at the Hoboken station.
Ray Martel, 41, of West Hempstead, NY, was riding in the first car of the LIRR train Saturday night told the Associated Press that “everyone gasped” when the passengers realized the train had hit something, adding that “We knew we hit something but we didn’t know how bad it was.”
Just how bad was described by another passenger, Lawrence Bialek, who told a New York Post reporter that “We were riding along and heard a noise…the train started to shake and then it stopped. I saw the car in front of me flip over. There were a lot of people screaming and crying and crawling out of the cars,” he explained. “I was just so scared!”
Fox News reported that “Long Island Rail Road trains have been involved in 72 accidents since Jan. 1, 2011, according to federal data, including 3 collisions and 15 derailments on tracks used for passenger service.”