At least six killed in US train derailment

PHILADELPHIA: Rescuers on Wednesday combed through the mangled wreckage of a derailed train in Philadelphia after an accident that left at least six dead, as the difficult search for possible survivors continued.

Mayor Michael Nutter said the death toll could rise from the derailment on the busy northeast US rail corridor as some of the 243 people on the train had not been accounted for.

He gave the injury toll as 65 but local media said it had risen to more than 140, based on a tally of people sent to local hospitals.

Herbert Cushing, the chief medical officer at Temple University Hospital, told reporters the death toll rose to six after a patient died during the night.

Witnesses said the front of Amtrak Train 188, heading from Washington DC to New York, shook as it went into a turn and crashed at about 9:30 pm on Tuesday (0130 GMT Wednesday).

Shell-shocked and bleeding travelers were seen limping from the wreckage, while rescue teams with flashlights searched the seven derailed cars of the train, one of which was completely flattened.

Wheels from the train cars lay scattered by the tracks.The cause of the crash, which came as the train negotiated a long bend, was not immediately known, although there was been no indication that it was a terrorist attack. Nutter refused to speculate on whether it was going too fast.