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Light Rail Train Crashes at BWI

August 15, 2000

LINTHICUM, Md. (AP) _ A light rail train crashed Tuesday at Baltimore Washington International Airport, injuring 23 people.

Most of the riders suffered only minor neck and back injuries in the 7:15 a.m. crash, authorities said.

``Evidently, a train was going too fast and could not stop at the station and went through the barrier at the international terminal,″ Mass Transit Administration spokesman Frank Fulton said.

The front of the train was crushed and rode up onto an abutment at the end of the line, but the train did not go into the terminal, Fulton said. The abutment is several feet high, and the front car came to rest at an upward angle.

Air traffic was not affected, although some roads leading to the terminal were closed temporarily by emergency vehicles.

Fulton said investigators had not ruled out mechanical failure as the cause of the crash. The driver will undergo mandatory drug and alcohol testing.

Officials at three hospitals said they treated 23 people and at least 13 were released before noon. The MTA said one was seriously injured but the hospitals did not immediately give conditions of the patients who had not been released.

Most people riding the train at that hour are airport or airline employees, not travelers, officials said.

In February, another light rail train crashed into the barrier at the end of the line at BWI, injuring 24. That driver was accused of using prescription and illegal drugs and charged with reckless endangerment.

The rail line connects the airport and Baltimore’s Penn Station. The first leg of the light rail system, which also serves other points, opened in 1992.

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On the Net:

BWI airport: http://www.bwiairport.com

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