Train operator said he jolted awake right before NYC derailment: report

New information released Tuesday about the deadly Metro-North Railroad derailment in the New York borough of the Bronx shows the motorman operating the control booth may have been dozing in the seconds before the crash.

DNAInfo New York reported that veteran engineer William Rockefeller pretty much admitted he was falling asleep and was in a dozed state when the train approached the curve, just outside the Spuyten Duyvil station. Investigators already have determined that the train was going much too fast for safety, hitting around 80 mph on a portion of track that called for about 30 mph.

SEE ALSO: NTSB: Train in N.Y. crash was traveling 82 mph in 30 mph zone

Four people were killed and dozens injured in the Sunday wreck.

Mr. Rockefeller, 46, said to emergency responders shortly after the wreck that he awoke just as the train hit the curve and he did not have time to stop or slow, DNAInfo reported. The cars immediately derailed, sending several sliding on to their sides.

Sources told DNAInfo that Mr. Rockefeller, who’s been an engineer for about 11 years, took a drug and alcohol test, but investigators don’t think he was impaired by substances.


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