A VIA passenger train derailed Thursday morning outside Quebec City. The train left Halifax traveling to Montreal when it jumped the tracks near Saint-Charles-de-Bellechasse, Quebec. Reportedly four of the approximately 120 passengers were injured and two homes left severely damaged.
All of seven passenger cars of train 15, know as the Ocean, derailed just before 5:00 a.m. Thursday morning according to VIA Rail. One of the two locomotives involved was left tipped on its side by the accident.
The injuries suffered in the crash were not as numerous as early reports had indicated and most were minor --- bruises, cuts and back injuries. One person at least an possibly four, taken to hospital with everyone else treated for shock at the scene.
The accident extensively damaged two homes built near the tracks. More than 11,000 litres of diesel fuel were spilt.
Resident Rose Anne Cameron, whose home was struck, told the CBC,
"I was sure it was an earthquake. Dishes were breaking everywhere . . . When I looked outside, I saw there was a train in my garage." Cameron said her home was shifted a foot and a half from the impact.
Passengers stranded by the accident completed their trips, traveling to Montreal and Drummondville, on buses supplied by the railroad.
The derailment may well affect the train service which normally runs six days a week except Tuesday. More information will be disclosed at a news conference to be held in Montreal.
The reason for the derailment is not clear at this time. Canada's Transportation and Safety Board is investigating. VIA
has activated a toll-free number for friends or family members looking for information on passengers travelling on the train: 1 877 747-0707.