From The LA TIMES
The train operator (Locomotive Engineer …you morons) severely injured in Tuesday’s Metrolink crash is clinging to life after his heart stopped twice on Wednesday.
A day after the commuter train barreled into a heavy-duty pickup truck in Oxnard and derailed, the engineer was among three still in critical condition at Ventura County Medical Center, said Chief Medical Officer Bryan Wong.
“We’ve been able to keep his heart back now, but it’s certainly unstable and we’re not certain what that’s going to lead to,” Wong said. “It’s touch and go right now in terms of whether he’ll make it.”
Wong said he visited some of the patients who remained at the hospital after Tuesday’s crash.
Officials said 28 people were hospitalized after the pre-dawn crash at 5th Street and Rice Avenue sent three passenger cars tumbling off the tracks and derailed a fourth car and the locomotive. The victims who suffered minor injuries have been gradually released from area hospitals. The most seriously injured were taken to VCMC.
Among those still at the hospital was a regular on the East Ventura Metrolink line, Wong said. When he asked the woman how she was doing, she only asked about the train’s engineer.
“It was very heartwarming,” Wong said. “It really reflects upon what type of man … [he] was and the lives that he touched.”
The engineer went into cardiac arrest, his heart stopping, at 10 a.m. and then a second time after medical personnel restarted it, Wong said.
Meanwhile, the investigation into what caused the crash and the train’s derailment continues. The National Transportation Safety Board is reviewing the train’s data recorder and footage from its cameras and investigating how and why the truck ended up on the tracks.
Oxnard police arrested the truck’s driver, Jose Alejandro Sanchez-Ramirez, 54, for allegedly abandoning his truck on the tracks after it got stuck. His attorney, Ron Bamieh, said Sanchez-Ramirez accidentally turned onto the tracks when he thought he was turning onto a street and couldn’t drive the truck off the tracks once it was on them. His client left the truck to find help and tried to warn the train by flashing the truck’s high beams before the crash, Bamieh said.
Sanchez-Ramirez was found more than a mile away from the site and was arrested on suspicion of felony hit and run. He’s scheduled to be arraigned Thursday afternoon.
Service on the line was shut down for the remainder of Tuesday but was restored by Wednesday afternoon.
For the latest on the Metrolink crash, follow
(ACCIDENT WAS AT THE CROSSING AT 5TH AND RICE JUST OUTSIDE OF THE STATION)
At least three Metrolink train cars derailed after the train hit a vehicle on Tuesday morning, according to NBC.
The train was going from Oxnard and Camarillo.
The vehicle was on the Ventura County Line tracks at the time of the collision, just before 6 a.m., according to Metrolink. Several cars were on their sides near 5th Street and Rice Avenue and the vehicle, described as a utility truck, was on fire after the crash about 80 miles northwest of Los Angeles.
According to AP:
Three cars of a Southern California Metrolink commuter train have derailed and tumbled onto their sides after a collision with a truck on tracks in Ventura County northwest of Los Angeles.
Oxnard police Sgt. Denise Shadinger says the crash reported at 5:44 a.m. Tuesday caused a number of injuries.
Shadinger says the truck became fully engulfed in flames.
A KABC-TV news helicopter was showing firefighters treating numerous people at the scene.
Metrolink’s website says the train was on a run from Ventura County to Los Angeles.
The train hit a vehicle just before 5:45 a.m., the California Highway Patrol said online. Several cars derailed, and at least one vehicle was said to be “fully engulfed,” the patrol said.
Aerial television crews are filming a scene of devastation. First responders are pushing injured people in stretchers. Some people are lying on the ground, and firefighters have hoses on cars that are off the track. Emergency vehicles dot a long stretch of road.