Fortunately, only the engineer and approximately 10 passengers suffered non-life threatening injuries and were promptly treated by local ambulance services, as confirmed by the Berrien County sheriff's office. Despite the derailment, the train managed to remain upright.
The incident took place approximately 70 miles east of Chicago. The vehicle in question was stuck on the tracks and was in the process of being removed when the train collided with it and the tow truck. Surprisingly, Amtrak had not been notified about the presence of the vehicle on the tracks, leaving the engineer with no warning, stated railroad spokesman Marc Magliari. He added that there are large blue signs at the crossing with a phone number to report such situations.
Passenger Riley Kozloff described the terrifying experience as a collision that resulted in a fire outside the train. "I bumped my head a little at first — the collision just happened," Kozloff told WNDU-TV in South Bend, Indiana. "It felt like it was 20 seconds long, everyone was just confused."
Following the incident, passengers were taken to New Buffalo High School for assistance. While some were picked up by their family and friends, others continued their journey to Chicago on buses arranged by Amtrak, according to the sheriff's office.
As investigations continue at the crash scene, at least eight trains traveling between Chicago and various communities in Michigan were canceled on Friday.