Reporting Meghan McCorkell
ROSEDALE, Md. (WJZ) — Federal investigators provide new information about the Rosedale train derailment that caused a massive explosion. And now for the first time, we’re seeing surveillance video of the impact.
Meghan McCorkell has those dramatic developments.
Fifteen federal investigators are now on scene, and they are starting to provide a timeline of events that led up to the explosion.
New video from a business surveillance camera shows the impact as the CSX train smashes into a trash truck. Minutes later, an explosion felt for miles.
“It was like being in a movie, you know. It was impressive and scary,” said John Perrigan, witness.
From Sky Eye Chopper 13, you can see the charred wreckage of the cars.
“This is ground zero. This is where the explosion happened. You can see that the tracks here are twisted and torn and ripped apart,” said Captain Jeff Long.
This surveillance video and a video recorder on the train, helping investigators piece together what happened.
The train, traveling 49 mph, approached as the truck began to cross the tracks. The two collided.
Seventeen seconds before the collision, the train sounded its horn three times.
“The third blast lasts and continues up to and including the point of impact,” said Robert Sumwalt, NTSB.
Thirty-three seconds after impact, the first smoke is visible. Ten seconds later, the first flames.
Five minutes and 23 seconds after impact, the car, carrying sodium chlorate, explodes.
“The sound was awful. It sounded like a car crash, but magnified,” said John Kane, witness.
The NTSB is now checking if anything went wrong with the truck.
“We will be conducting the post-crash truck inspection, looking at the brakes, the electronic control module of the engine,” Sumwalt said.
Federal investigators will also examine damage from the explosion, like blown out garage doors. Video, now providing the key clues to how this tragedy happened.
Thursday, NTSB investigators plan to interview the crew that was on board the train at the time of the collision.
The driver of that trash truck, 50-year-old John Alban, Jr., is still being treated at Shock Trauma.