An Amtrak train has derailed between Seattle and Portland. (Washington State Patrol)

An Amtrak train has derailed between Seattle and Portland. (Washington State Patrol)

UPDATE: ‘Multiple fatalities’ as Amtrak derails in Washington State

13 cars jumped the tracks as train made its first voyage between Seattle and Portland

Authorities say there have been ‘multiple fatalities’ and injuries following an Amtrak passenger train that derailed on the I-5 highway south of Tacoma, WA, just before 8 a.m. Monday morning.

According to the Pierce County Sheriff, the train was heading south when it left the tracks at the Mount Road overpass, leaving it hanging over the I-5 below.

“Injuries and casualties reported, numbers to come,” the detachment tweeted earlier Monday morning.

Later on Monday, the Pierce County Sheriff said they could not update casualty numbers, noting that several cars were still too unstable to search.

READ: High-speed rail tragedy leaves plans in shambles, says columnist

Preliminary numbers from the Associated Press said that at least six people were killed.

Dozens of victims have been taken to local area hospitals, according to a hospital operator in the Tacoma area.

A Washington State Patrol trooper confirmed that five cars and two semis were hit but that no motorists were killed.

The train had 12 cars and two engines; of those, 12 jumped the tracks. A state patrol trooper said that no fuel had leaked so far but hazmat crews were on their way to the scene.

In a statement Monday morning, Amtrak said that there were 78 passengers and five crew members aboard the train, which was the Cascades 501 travelling from Seattle to Portland. The company is looking into the incident.

All Amtrak service south of Seattle has been halted. According to the Amtrak website, the 501 only began running between Seattle and Portland on Monday and the Pierce County Sheriff confirmed that this was the first day that these tracks had been used to run the Seattle-Portland train.

Gov. Jay Inslee has declared a state of emergency following the disaster.

READ: Washington Governor, B.C. premier talk high speed rail during visit

As of early Monday afternoon, National Transportation Safety Board had deployed a team of investigators to the area.

All southbound lanes of the I-5 remain blocked as crews work to finish searching the rubble for bodies and clearing the train cars.

Anyone with friends family on the train is asked to call 800-523-9101 and avoid heading to the region.

More to come.

Just Posted

Ucluelet local Geoff Johnson snapped this photo of a Risso’s dolphin that washed up near Chesterman Beach in Tofino on Wednesday, Jan. 13. (Geoff Johnson photo)
Washed up Risso’s dolphin offers glimpse into “whole other world” near Tofino

“It’s like a UFO crash landed and you can come look at it”

This weekend Amy Pye is holding a virtual book launch for her latest children’s book, <em>Bruce the Silly Goose</em>. (Photo courtesy Amy Pye)
Nanaimo writer and illustrator pens children’s book about COVID-19 safety

Amy Pye to hold online book launch for ‘Bruce the Silly Goose’

Coaches with the Juan de Fuca Minor Hockey association have had to get creative during their weekly practices to keep players interested and improving their skills without physical contact. (Damian Kowalewich photo)
Vancouver Island minor hockey coach shares what it’s like on the ice without parents, fans

Most practices consist of relay races, goalie shots and passing drills

3L Developments has stated it is pulling the plug on its plans to build a residential neighbourhood in the Stotan Falls area. The company has repeatedly offered to turn the Stotan Falls area into parkland, if the CVRD were to amend its Regional Growth Strategy to allow for a residential community to be built in the area. The CVRD has steadfastly turned down the development company. File photo.
Plugged pulled on decade-old Comox Valley development project

3L Developments say there will be no further development applications filed for Stotan Falls

The profitability of Victoria International Airport dropped by almost $17 million in 2020 because of COVID-19. (Black Press Media File)
Victoria International Airport revenues in a tailspin

While airport made $9.2 million in profits 2019, COVID-19 brought estimated losses of $7.5 million

A scene from “Canada and the Gulf War: In their own words,” a video by The Memory Project, a program of Historica Canada, is shown in this undated illustration. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - Historica Canada
New video marks Canada’s contributions to first Gulf War on 30th anniversary

Veterans Affairs Canada says around 4,500 Canadian military personnel served during the war

A 17-year-old snowmobiler used his backcountry survival sense in preparation to spend the night on the mountain near 100 Mile House Saturday, Jan. 16, 2021 after getting lost. (South Cariboo Search and Rescue Facebook photo)
Teen praised for backcountry survival skills after getting lost in B.C.’s Cariboo mountains

“This young man did everything right after things went wrong.”

Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole holds a press conference on Parliament Hill, in Ottawa on December 10, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
No place for ‘far right’ in Conservative Party, Erin O’Toole says

O’Toole condemned the Capitol attack as ‘horrifying’ and sought to distance himself and the Tories from Trumpism

A passer by walks in High Park, in Toronto, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. This workweek will kick off with what’s fabled to be the most depressing day of the year, during one of the darkest eras in recent history. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
‘Blue Monday’ getting you down? Exercise may be the cure, say experts

Many jurisdictions are tightening restrictions to curb soaring COVID-19 case counts

Jackie Hildering, whale researcher with the Marine Education and Research Society, and Nanaimo Area Land Trust will present the Return of Giants, a webinar about the humpback whales’ return from the brink of extinction and how boaters can help protect them. (Jackie Hildering/MERS photo taken under Marine Mammal License MML-42)
‘Return of the Giants:’ B.C. getting a second chance to coexist with humpback whales

‘Marine Detective’ partners with Nanaimo stewardship group on webinar

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
COVID-19: Provinces work on revised plans as Pfizer-BioNTech shipments to slow down

Anita Anand said she understands and shares Canadians’ concerns about the drug company’s decision

Tourists take photographs outside the British Columbia Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday August 26, 2011. A coalition of British Columbia tourism industry groups is urging the provincial government to not pursue plans to ban domestic travel to fight the spread of COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. travel ban will harm struggling tourism sector, says industry coalition

B.C. government would have to show evidence a travel ban is necessary

(Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
‘Targeted’ shooting in Coquitlam leaves woman in hospital

The woman suffered non-life threatening injuries in what police believe to be a targeted shooting Saturday morning

The Gardens at Qualicum Beach is now owned by family-owned The Care Group. (thegardensatqualicum.com)
The Gardens at Qualicum Beach has new owners

Family has travelled to Qualicum Beach for more than a century

Most Read