PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Latest on a court hearing for the engineer in a deadly Amtrak derailment (all times local):
A passenger who survived a deadly Amtrak crash in Philadelphia more than two years ago says she heard a “big bang,” then blacked out and woke up in the woods.
Blair Berman was riding in the severely damaged first car of the train. She testified Tuesday at a preliminary hearing for Brandon Bostian, an Amtrak engineer who’s facing criminal charges in the derailment that killed eight people and wounded about 200.
Berman says the train speeded up as it approached a curve and she could feel her body weight shifting before the crash. She says the train was “going way too fast.”
Federal safety investigators say Bostian accelerated to 106 mph in a 50 mph curve. They concluded Bostian lost his bearings while distracted by an incident with a nearby train.
The engineer in a deadly Amtrak derailment in Philadelphia is due in court to learn if he’ll face trial on criminal charges including involuntary manslaughter and reckless endangerment.
Brandon Bostian’s lawyers are going into Tuesday’s preliminary hearing seeking to dismiss the case, which came about only after a victim’s family got a judge to order that charges be filed.
Investigators say Bostian accelerated to 106 mph in a 50 mph curve in May 2015, sending the Washington-to-New York train tumbling from the tracks. Eight people died, and about 200 people were hurt.
Federal safety investigators concluded Bostian lost his bearings while distracted by an incident with a nearby train.
The judge overruled a district attorney’s decision not to bring charges after victim Rachel Jacobs’ family filed a private criminal complaint.