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3 people killed, 50 injured in Amtrak train crash in northern Missouri

One person inside the dump truck and two people on the train were killed, a Missouri Highway Patrol spokesman said in a press conference.

MENDON, Mo. — Three people have died and dozens of people were injured when a train struck a dump truck in Mendon, Missouri, emergency officials said.

In a press conference, Corporal Justin Dunn with the Missouri State Highway Patrol said one person inside the dump truck and two people on the train were killed. The superintendent with Chariton County Ambulance Service told CNN that at least 50 people were injured.

Dunn said seven of the eight train cars derailed when the train hit the dump truck at the Porche Prarie Avenue crossing at around 12:40 Monday afternoon.

MSHP Lieutenant Eric Brown said the crossing was an uncontrolled crossing over a gravel road, meaning there were no lights or crossing arms. He said uncontrolled crossings are common in rural areas. Brown said investigators did not know if the truck was stuck on the tracks or if it was moving.

In a statement, Amtrak said the train was traveling from Los Angeles to Chicago. Amtrak said there were approximately 243 passengers and 12 crew members on the train, Dunn said there were 207 passengers and crewmembers on the train.

Three passengers were being taken from the scene to University Hospital in Columbia, hospital spokesman Eric Maze said. He did not have information on their conditions.

The Missouri Highway Patrol and other local law enforcement units were at the scene to help and Amtrak said it has deployed resources to the site.

Passengers included 16 youths and eight adults from two Boy Scout troops who were traveling home to Appleton, Wisconsin, after a backcountry excursion at the Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico. No one in the group was seriously injured, said Scott Armstrong, director of national media relations for the Boy Scouts of America. The Scouts administered first aid to several injured passengers, including the driver of the dump truck, Armstrong said.

High school students from Pleasant Ridge High School in Easton, Kansas, who were headed to a Future Business Leaders of America conference in Chicago, were also aboard, Superintendent Tim Beying told The Kansas City Star.

It was the second Amtrak collision in as many days. Three people were killed Sunday afternoon when an Amtrak commuter train smashed into a car ín Northern California, authorities said.

Aerial footage of the crash showed the train off the tracks with multiple train cars tipped onto their sides. First responders were on the scene standing on top of the toppled train cars.

In an interview with CNN, passenger Robert Nightingale said every car other than the engine car tipped onto its side when the train hit the truck. He said he and other passengers had to climb out of the overturned cars after the crash and sat on top of the cars until first responders arrived.

He said the passengers were then taken to an area school where some were being treated by EMS workers.

Mendon, Missouri, is a town of about 160 people about 85 miles northwest of Columbia in Chariton County, Missouri.

The statement from Amtrak is as follows:

"On June 27 at 12:42 p.m. CT, Southwest Chief Train 4, traveling eastbound on BNSF track from Los Angeles to Chicago, derailed 8 cars and 2 locomotives after striking a truck that was obstructing a public crossing near Mendon, Missouri. There were approximately 243 passengers and 12 crew members onboard with early reports of injuries. Local authorities are currently assisting customers. Our Incident Response Team has been activated, and we are deploying emergency personnel to the scene to help support our passengers, our employees and their families with their needs. Individuals with questions about their friends and family who were traveling aboard this train should call 800-523-9101. Additional details will be provided as available."  

This is a breaking news story that will be updated when more information becomes available.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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