NTSB: Speed a factor in Amtrak derailing

| Monday, August 26, 2002

An Amtrak train was going more than twice as fast as it should have when it derailed last month because a speed restriction had been prematurely lifted, according to the National Transportation Safety Board, AP reports.

More than 100 people were injured when the train from Chicago to Washington jumped track and overturned in Kensington, MD.

NTSB said, however, it was too early to determine the cause of the accident. Early reports speculated that tracks may have been "bowed" due to heat in the upper 90s the day of the accident.

CSX Corp. crews worked on the section of the company-owned track July 22. They planned to finish the work later, and a 25-mph speed limit was placed on the track. Apparently, a supervisor who thought the work was done raised the speed limit to 60 mph on July 28. The train was traveling at 60 mph when it derailed July 29.

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