EAST GREENWICH, R.I. (WPRI) – Police confirm a person has been struck and killed by an Amtrak train in East Greenwich Sunday afternoon.
Amtrak police say the Northeast Regional train 135 headed south from Boston to Washington, D.C. hit a person on the tracks near King Street at 2:32 p.m.
“I heard the train horn and I woke up, and I said to myself ‘I think something just happened on the track,'” said Trevor Hazard, who lives near the tracks. “And then my mom came upstairs and said ‘some little girl got hit on the train tracks.'”
Hazard says his sister-in-law attempted to help the two teenage girls, one of whom was struck. Police have declined to confirm the age or genders of the pedestrians.
The train tracks perpendicular to King Street are elevated from the road, and reaching them requires climbing a small hill. There’s a fence on either side of the tracks to prevent people from walking on them, but there was an unlocked gate in the fence.
“There’s a gate that opens right where those gentlemen are right up on that hill,” said Norma Harris, another neighbor. She was pointing to investigators working on the tracks after the fatal crash.
East Greenwich Police told Eyewitness News that a person had died on the tracks, but deferred to Amtrak Police as the lead investigators for any more information regarding the incident. Amtrak spokesperson Mike Tolbert said he had no further information on the victim or what led to the crash. He said 378 people were on the train, which was subsequently delayed for three hours. One track was opened shortly after the crash, and both tracks were opened just before 5 p.m.
Tolbert said the Northeast Regional train tops out at 125 miles per hour, and it takes several miles to stop if an engineer sees a person on the tracks. He said the tracks are private property, and people are asked not to trespass.
Neil Remiesiewicz contributed to this report.