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Accident Report Detail

 
Derailment of Amtrak Passenger Train No. 60, the Montrealer, on the Central Vermont Railway

Executive Summary

About 6:50 a.m, eastern standard time, on July 7, 1984, northbound Amtrak passenger train No. 60, the Montrealer, derailed while passing over a washed-out section of gravel embankment under the main track of the Central Vermont Railway near Essex Junction, Vermont. Two locomotive units and the forward seven cars of the train derailed and were destroyed or heavily damaged. Three passengers and an Amtrak sleeping car attendant were killed; one Central Vermont crewmember died about 3 hours after the accident as a result of injuries sustained in the accident. One Central Vermont crewmember, two Amtrak attendants, and 26 passengers were seriously injured. Damage was estimated at $6,586,312.


Probable Cause

The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the accident was a flash flood that destroyed the railroad support embankment over a small stream during a prolonged period of extraordinarily heavy rainfall. The flash flood was precipitated by the heavy rains and the collapse of a series of beaver dams upstream of the embankment in heavily wooded locations that were unknown and were not reasonably detectable.


Accident Location: Essex Junction , VT    
Accident Date: 7/7/1984
Accident ID: DCA84AR013

Date Adopted: 12/10/1985
NTSB Number: RAR-85-14
NTIS Number: PB85-916314

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