Calamities

At least 10 dead in Chatsworth train crash*

Picking up from the earlier roundup:

* It's a bit clearer now what probably happened. A source with good connections in the transit agencies emails that Ventura-bound Metrolink train #111 typically waits at the Chatsworth station until the southbound Union Pacific freight train from up the coast passes by about 4:15. For some reason, today the passenger train proceeded up the tracks from Chatsworth and smacked head-on into the freight train. "There is no question" the freight train would have the right of way on that stretch of track, he says. 7:28 pm
* It's dark now at the scene, and lights have been brought in for the continuing rescue and recovery efforts. Work is still focusing on the Metrolink car that was crushed by the train's locomotive and toppled on its side. At least seven bodies have been recovered and more than 40 injured passengers have been treated. 7:33 pm
* Channel 5 just wisely advised parents to keep the children of possible victims away from the television for awhile. Channels 2, 5, 7, 11 and 13 are still live from the scene. 7:34 pm
* Mayor Villaraigosa estimated for reporters that the fatalities could total 10 to 15. Apparently surgeons have been summoned to the scene. 7:38 pm
* At least ten victims are confirmed dead and Villaraigosa says the injuries are over 100, Fox 11 reports. Some medical crews are being released, suggesting that the rescue crisis is under control. Chatsworth High School will be opened as an information center for family members at 8 pm, Fox 11 says. Family members are urged to call (800) 371-5465 for information about loved ones. 7:43 pm
* An ambulance-chasing website already has a phone number for families to call to "protect your legal rights." 7:48 pm
* Rescue dogs trained to locate trapped humans are en route to the scene, Fox 11 says. Channel 2 calls them "cadaver dogs." 7:50 pm
* LAPD is saying up to 20 people are dead, according to CBS 2. 7:52 pm
* Channels 5 and 11 dropped coverage at 8 pm for prime-time entertainment programming. Channel 9 is doing the Dodgers. Channels 2 and 7 are still on the scene live. 8:01 pm
* I'm told by a journalist who has been monitoring scanners that LAFD used it's brand new Augusta Westland 139 helicopter (call sign FIRE 5) for the first time in this incident. 8:05 pm
* Villaraigosa live on Channel 2: Proud of the rescue efforts. "It's been like a ballet....Very proud at this moment." 8:08 pm
* Villaraigosa: At least 10 coroner-confirmed deaths. "That number will likely grow....there are still people who have not been extricated from the wreckage. The number of injured is hard to estimate at this point....probably over 100 but we don't have specifics on the nature of those injuries." 8:10 pm
* To repeat: the mayor and the LAFD say there are still people alive in the train and the rescue phase continues. 8:12 pm
* There was a uniformed Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy on board the Metrolink train and he survived with minor injuries, Sheriff Lee Baca says. The sheriff's office effectively works for the city during this emergency, Baca says.8:15 pm


More by Kevin Roderick:
John Severson, 83, founder of Surfer magazine
LA Observed Notes: 60 Minutes, selling the Coliseum and more
Gil Cedillo, Nick Melvoin win LA runoffs*
LA Observed Notes: Baca goes down, LAX shuffle, media moves
LA Observed Notes: Big TV news, media moves, obits and more
Recent Calamities stories on LA Observed:
Mass evacuation below Oroville Dam
Bet you didn't know quicksand is a real SoCal thing
Sand Fire grows overnight to 35,000 acres
New leak over the weekend above Porter Ranch
Porter Ranch leak sealed off, now on to Exide
Gas leak stopped above Porter Ranch, at least for now
Alex Padilla is among the Porter Ranch dislocated
Negligence to blame in Porter Ranch, AQMD says


 

LA Observed on Twitter