Officials investigating cause of train collision with car in New York

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Investigators looking into a train collision in New York are focusing on why a car was stopped at a railroad crossing near White Plains north of New York City.

A black Mercedes-Benz SUV was stalled on the tracks before a Metro-North train crashed into it on Tuesday evening. Hundreds of feet of electrified rail punctured the first two carriages of the commuter train after it hit the car, which was pushed almost 1,000 feet down the railroad, a federal investigator said on Wednesday.

The force of the impact also broke the rail into several long pieces that penetrated the first train carriage as a fire broke out. The fire was apparently fueled by gasoline in the car’s fuel tank. At least one section of the electrified third rail also entered the second carriage near the ceiling, according to investigators.

Robert Sumwalt, a member of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), said the National Transportation and Safety Board is expected to release data from the train’s recorder on Thursday, according to Reuters.

1. Vehicle on the tracks
2. Emergency brake pulled, train horn sounds
3. Train pushes car forward roughly 950 feet
4. Rail breaks into long pieces and penetrates train’s first carriage
5. Gasoline from vehicle fuels fire
6. Rail punctures train’s second carriage

VOICEOVER (in English):

“Investigators looking into this week’s deadly train collision in New York say they do not yet have an explanation for how a vehicle became stuck on the tracks.”

“The engineer of the train said he activated the emergency brake, which prompted the horn to sound for four seconds before the collision."

“The train was traveling at 58 miles per hour and pushed the vehicle forward 950 feet before stopping.”

“A federal investigator said the rail broke into long pieces and penetrated the first carriage, piling up inside.”

“A fire that broke out was apparently fueled by gasoline from the vehicle's punctured fuel tank.”

“At least one section of the electrified third rail also entered the second carriage of the train near the ceiling.”

Reuters, ABC News, Time