Train Derailment in Michigan Injures Nine People

Amtrak will restore its normal service to and from Michigan on Monday after a Sunday morning derailment sent nine people to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

Amtrak Wolverine No. 350 train, which had left Chicago for Pontiac, Mich., derailed Sunday morning about two miles east of Niles, Mich., officials said.

Seven passengers and two crew members were taken to area hospitals with non-life threatening injuries, according to a statement from Amtrak officials. One passenger remained hospitalized as of Sunday evening.

The incident happened shortly after 9 a.m. Central Time when several cars on the No. 350 train traveling from Chicago to Pontiac lost contact with the tracks, said Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari.

The train cars remained upright and in line with each other.

There were 174 passengers and four crew members aboard the train.

The passengers who were not transported to the hospital were taken in charter buses to their destinations, Magliari said.

Miriam Baker of New Lenox said the train had just left the Niles area when the conductor announced they would be passing a train headed toward Chicago.

"Then the train started to sway and then things started flying," Baker said. "This was my first train ride and it started out good. It was a very nice ride with very pretty colors. Then all hell broke loose," Baker said.

Baker, who was on the second car behind the engine added she cracked her elbow, but was not seriously injured and was treated at the scene as well as other passengers.

Officials from Amtrak, the Federal Railroad Administration, and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the derailment.

Copyright 2012 - Chicago Tribune

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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