19 injured in NYC subway derailment

NEW YORK — A New York City subway train derailed Friday morning in Queens, sending four passengers to local hospitals with potentially serious injuries and causing long service disruptions on several other transit lines.

An additional 15 passengers were treated for minor injuries suffered when an express F train bound for Manhattan and Brooklyn derailed shortly before 10:30 a.m., according to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the New York City Fire Department.

Firefighters and emergency medical service responders who raced to the scene guided the estimated 1,000 passengers to emergency ladders that led upward through grates to the street as the derailment site was evacuated, officials said.

EMS crews evaluated and treated riders who rested on stretchers or in wheelchairs after they climbed out of the subway tunnel.

All passengers were safely evacuated as of 12:15 p.m., the MTA said.

The train, which was carrying about 1,000 passengers, derailed near 65th Street and Broadway in the Woodside section of Queens, the MTA said. The site, roughly 1,200 feet south of the 65th Street station, is located a few miles east of Manhattan across the East River.

The F train line stretches from central Queens into Manhattan along Sixth Avenue, then south into Brooklyn and a terminus at Coney Island, home of the famed boardwalk and amusement park.

The derailment halted F train service in both directions between Jamaica-179th Street and 21st Street Queensbridge. Subway service on some sections of the E, M and R lines was also disrupted, the MTA said.

Three nearby F and E line subway trains were halted as emergency crews shut down electrical power after the derailment. Those trains were later backed to stations where passengers disembarked.

New York City's subway system is one of the largest public transportation systems in the world, with an average 5.5 million weekday rides.

System derailments are relatively rare. The most recent major derailment occurred in August 1991, when a southbound No. 4 train jumped the tracks as it roared into a curve at the Union Square station at 14th Street in Manhattan.

Five people were killed and more than 200 were injured in the disaster. The motorman, whom authorities determined had been drunk at the time of the accident, was convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Contributing: Associated Press.


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