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20 Hurt as Amtrak Train Hits Truck

November 26, 1987|United Press International

SEFFNER, Fla. — A Tampa-bound Amtrak train with 67 passengers aboard plowed into a semitrailer truck stranded on the tracks Wednesday, derailing three cars and slightly injuring 20 people, officials said.

Amtrak's southbound "Silver Star" destroyed the truck at a crossing in Seffner. The locomotive, mail car and an empty sleeper car derailed, but the passenger cars remained on the track, Amtrak spokesman John Jacobsen said.

Officials said 20 people suffered minor injuries, including 16 who were taken to hospitals and four treated at the scene. A sheriff's spokesman said most of the injured passengers bumped their heads or suffered cuts.

Highway Patrol Lt. Harry Mofield said the tractor cab cleared the tracks, but the trailer, which was carrying a heavy backhoe, got snagged, stranding the rig on the crossing.

The driver was unable to budge the truck and ran across the street when he saw the train coming, Mofield said.

Jacobsen said the train was heading from Jacksonville to Tampa. It was going about 20 m.p.h. when the accident occurred, he said.

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