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Amtrak will pay derailment costs, governor says

Gov. Inslee on Amtrak tragedy: ‘We’ve got to make sure what happened here never happens again’

Gov. Jay Inslee and Pierce County Executive Bruce Dammeier hold a press conference Tuesday at the scene of the Amtrak train derailment near DuPont.
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Gov. Jay Inslee and Pierce County Executive Bruce Dammeier hold a press conference Tuesday at the scene of the Amtrak train derailment near DuPont.

Gov. Jay Inslee released a statement Wednesday confirming that Amtrak has agreed to pay derailment costs following Monday’s tragic event in DuPont that killed three passengers.

“The swift response to this tragedy has been the result of cooperation from all the involved jurisdictions,” Inslee said in the release. “The priority has been on taking care of those on board the train and restoring access to I-5 as soon as safely possible.

“This response, however, does not come without financial costs.”

Inslee spoke with Amtrak president and co-CEO Richard Anderson about the matter Wednesday.

He said in the release the corporation will pay for costs including medical and incidental expenses for injured passengers and their families, road clean-up and repairs, and restoration of rail service.

He also said Amtrak committed to make Positive Train Control (PTC) operational on trains in Washington as soon as possible, and before the federal deadline on Dec. 31, 2018.

“I want to be clear there are still many unanswered questions about how and why this incident occurred,” Inslee said. “I have confidence the NTSB’s investigation will provide those answers.

“Crews have made commendable progress on restoring I-5 and I ask that travelers continue to be patient as they complete opening of the lanes.”

Lauren Smith: 360-754-5473, @smithlm12

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