Judy Woodruff: The wreckage of an Amtrak train lies strewn around an overpass in Washington state tonight. It derailed this morning with 84 people on board. At least six were killed and dozens were hurt. The southbound train went off the rails near the town of DuPont and shut down part of Interstate 5. Near the scene is Austin Jenkins of radio station KUOW and the Northwest News Network, a collaboration of NPR stations. I spoke to him just a short while ago. Austin Jenkins, thank you for talking with us. What do you know so far about the extent of the casualties?
Austin Jenkins: We know there are multiple deaths. We do not have a confirmed number. We know there are multiple injuries. This was a passenger train with 12 cars. It wasn't packed full. In fact, it was fairly light in terms of passengers, but we know that most if not all of those train cars derailed. At least one of them fell to the freeway below. Another train car or two are hanging from this bridge over the interstate. This is a major disaster and a major scene with all of these rail cars off the track.
Judy Woodruff: How is the operation, the rescue operation going? Are they still hoping to find people alive?
Austin Jenkins: My sense is that they have rescued everybody who survived this and either took them to local hospitals, or if they were not injured or ambulatory, then they put them on buses, and those individuals, those passengers have now reunited with their families. At this point, it looks like this is a recovery mission and it's also the beginnings of an extensive investigation into what went wrong.
Judy Woodruff: Austin Jenkins, this was a new route, we have been reporting. So it truly had not been used for commuters before.
Austin Jenkins: That's right, and it's a very new stretch of track, a straight stretch where the train might have been going upwards of 70 miles an hour, and then it comes to a bend in the track and comes across this bridge over Interstate 5. And that's where this derailment happened. But what led to that derailment, we still don't know. There has been some speculations, but nothing specific or confirmed at this point.
Judy Woodruff: We can assume people in both Washington state and Oregon are going to be affected by this.
Austin Jenkins: Absolutely. And Interstate 5 is the major north-south thoroughfare through Washington state and up down the West Coast. Right now, the southbound lanes of Intestate 5 through this area absolutely shut down for the foreseeable future.
Judy Woodruff: Austin Jenkins with the Northwest News Network, thank you.
Austin Jenkins: You're welcome.