U.S.

Amtrak engineer faces charges in fatal 2015 derailment

Amtrak engineer faces charges in fatal 2015 derailment

Pennsylvania's attorney general appeared to disagree with the previous conclusion, and filed eight counts of involuntary manslaughter, one count of causing or risking a catastrophe, and multiple counts of reckless endangerment Friday.

Criminal charges have been filed against the engineer behind a deadly Amtrak train crash on the Northeast Corridor in Philadelphia two years ago.

But a Philadelphia municipal court judge on Thursday ordered the charges of involuntary manslaughter and reckless endangerment against Bostian to be revived.

In his first interview with investigators the week the crash occurred, Bostian told the NTSB he had little memory of the night of the crash when investigators said the train, bound for NY, sped around a curve at the Frankford Junction, and then derailed.

Under state law, Friday marks the two-year deadline to charge Bostian in the May 12, 2015, crash, which killed eight people and injured more than 180.

"The evidence indicates that the derailment was caused by the engineer operating the train far in excess of the speed limit".

"The city quickly referred the prosecution to the state attorney general Thursday to avoid a potential conflict of interest".

"I commend our outstanding team in the Office of Attorney General who worked diligently and thoughtfully around the clock to enable us to be in this position to pursue justice on behalf of the victims of this deadly crash".




The district attorney's office could appeal after it said it's reviewing Neifeld's order. "That was clearly wrong, as evidenced by the attorney general not only reversing course but adding charges".

After he "lost situational awareness as to where his train was located in relation to the curve", the NTSB said, Mr Bostian actually accelerated the train to past 100mph - "consistent with a belief that his train had already passed the curve into an area of relatively straight track". He had heard through radio traffic that a nearby commuter train had been struck by a rock.

In its report, the NTSB said that a safety system called positive train control - which it first recommended implementation of in 1970 - would have prevented the crash.

Philadelphia prosecutors concluded this week that there was insufficient evidence to prove that Bostian acted with intent or "conscious disregard" for the passengers' safety.

A judge says Bostian lives in MA. Jacobs, a technology executive, was a wife and mother.

Amtrak has taken responsibility for the crash and agreed to pay $265 million to settle claims filed by victims and their families. A lawyer for Bostian did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Friday.

Of the 238 passengers, eight were killed - Laura Finamore, James Gaines, Abid Gilani, Robert Gildersleeve, Derrick Griffith, Rachel Jacobs, Giuseppe Piras and Justin Zemser.


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