(Reuters) – An Amtrak passenger train hit debris from a rockslide and derailed in central Vermont on Monday, sending at least seven people to the hospital, officials said on Monday.
The train, en route from St. Albans, Vermont, to Washington, went off the tracks near Roxbury, about 20 miles south of the state capital Montpelier, Amtrak said in a statement.
The U.S. national passenger rail service said the derailment of Train 55 was reported to local authorities at 10:30 a.m.
Police and emergency crews went to the scene, Vermont State Police spokesman Scott Waterman said.
One Twitter user, who identified himself as Brian Bell, posted photographs of a train pressed up against a pile of rocks. “Hit a rock slide,” an accompanying message said. Images from others showed train cars that had slid down an embankment.
Seven passengers were transported to nearby hospitals. Amtrak said there were no immediate reports of life-threatening injuries.
The remaining passengers were loaded onto buses and taken to nearby Norwich University, a military college that acts as a Red Cross evacuation site.
Montpelier Fire Department Lieutenant Dana Huoppi told Fox News the train had five cars, two of which went down an embankment.
The incident came five months after the derailment of an Amtrak train near Philadelphia killed eight people and injured more than 200.
The May 12 accident spurred U.S. lawmakers to push through implementation of technology that could have prevented the accident but the rail industry has pressed for an extension of a year-end deadline to install so-called positive train control (PTC) for another three years.
In February, six people were killed in a fiery collision between a Metro-North Railroad passenger train and a sports utility vehicle in Valhalla, a New York City suburb.
The National Transportation Safety Board was gathering information about the accident.
(Reporting by Suzannah Gonzales in Chicago, Daniel Bases, Laila Kearney and Barbara Goldberg in New York; Writing by Frank McGurty; Editing by Bill Trott and Doina Chiacu)
Photo: Passengers stand outside of an Amtrak, which derailed near Roxbury, Vt., on October 5, 2015. Brian A. Bell/Twitter