Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Ten dead as Texas prison bus collides with train

At least 10 people have been killed after a bus carrying prisoners lost control on an icy motorway and collided with a train in Texas, officials say.

Ector County Sheriff Mark Donaldson said the bus careened off an Interstate 20 overpass and landed on train tracks west of Odessa. A freight train then struck the bus, he said.

The bus was traveling from the Middleton Unit in Abilene to the Sanchez Unit in El Paso when it was involved in the accident at about 7:30 a.m., state prison officials said.

Two correctional officers and eight inmates died in the crash, according to state officials, and one staff member and four other inmates were taken to the Medical Center in Odessa where a spokeswoman told the Los Angeles Times that four were critical and one was in serious condition.

An investigation into the cause of the accident is ongoing.

Images from the scene showed that the white prison bus, crumpled with heavy damage to its top and undercarriage, came to rest on its side.

“It's with a heavy heart that we mourn the loss of those killed and injured this morning in a tragic accident,” said Brad Livingston, executive director of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. “Their loved ones will be in our thoughts and prayers.”

The Union Pacific freight train was traveling from Los Angeles to Marion, Ark., with 58 cars and four locomotives, Mark Davis, a railroad spokesman told The Times.

Two employees on the freight train were uninjured, he said.

Carrying parcels and packages, the train remained at the accident site while the investigation was being carried out.

The railroad will be sending people to inspect the damage and the track, according to Davis.

Wednesday 14 January 2015


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