MetroFocus: September 29, 2016-Deadly Hoboken Crash

This morning’s commute took a deadly turn when a New Jersey Transit train failed to reduce speed while entering a major station in Hoboken. At 8:45 a.m., a commuter train went airborne after hitting a bumper block and plowed into a crowded passenger concourse; the force of the crash caused parts of the ceiling to cave in. At least one person standing on the platform was killed by falling debris, and more than 100 people sustained injuries both inside the train and the station. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie stated that all passengers trapped on the train were safely evacuated earlier today and investigations are ongoing to determine what caused this tragic event. Tonight, MetroFocus is on the scene in Hoboken getting you the latest from the people there and what this might do to transit in New Jersey and New York.

 

TRANSCRIPT

> TONIGHT ON 'METROFOCUS,' CHAOS AND DESTRUCTION IN HOBOKEN AS THE P.A.T.H. TRAIN PLOWS INTO THE TERMINAL IN THAT CITY.

HUNDREDS HURT AS THE FATALITY REPORTED AS A RESULT OF THE COLLISION.

THE SCENE OF 1614 AND THE HAVOC IN HOBOKEN AS 'METROFOCUS' STARTS RIGHT NOW.

♪ ♪

THIS IS 'METROFOCUS.'

WITH RAFAEL PI ROMAN, JACK FORD, AND JENNA FLANAGAN.

FUNDING FOR THIS PROGRAM WAS PROVIDED BY --

WHAT WE KNOW IS THAT THIS TRAIN CAME IN AT A HIGH RATE OF SPEED INTO THE STATION AND CRASHED THROUGH ALL THE BARRIERS, BRINGING IT RIGHT TO THE INTERIOR WALL OF THE HOBOKEN TERMINAL.

EXTRAORDINARY REACTION FROM LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT, EMS.

ALONG WITH CIVILIAN PASSENGERS.

I KNOW HUMAN NATURE SAYS, HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?

WE WANT TO KNOW AND WE WANT TO KNOW NOW.

UNFORTUNATELY, WE WON'T KNOW TODAY.

WE WON'T KNOW UNTIL THE INVESTIGATION RUNS ITS COURSE.

GOVERNORS CHRISTIE AND CUOMO REACTING TO TODAY'S HORRIFIC TRAIN CRASH IN HOBOKEN.

GOOD EVENING, EVERYONE.

WELCOME.

A TRAGIC DAY IN OUR AREA SENT TRANSIT TRAIN 1614 WENT BARRELLING INTO HOBOKEN STATION AT 8:45 THIS MORNING AT THE HEIGHT OF RUSH HOUR.

OVER 100 PEOPLE WERE HURT.

SOME OF THEM CRITICALLY.

HOBOKEN STATION IS NOW A TWISTED PILE OF METAL AND CONCRETE AND PARTS OF ITS CEILING COLLAPSED.

THE NTSB IS INVESTIGATING.

JOINING US NOW FROM HOBOKEN IS 'METROFOCUS' CONTRIBUTOR, WILL JONES.

WILL?

WHAT DO YOU HAVE FOR US?

Reporter: THANKS.

THE KEY LINES OUT OF THE PRESS CONFERENCE TODAY WAS THIS TRAIN WAS TRAVELING AT FAR TOO FAST A SPEED.

NTSB INVESTIGATORS HAVE BEEN ARRIVING ON THE SCENE THROUGHOUT THE COURSE OF THE DAY TO LAUNCH THIS INVESTIGATION WHICH IS TO TAKE A NUMBER OF DAYS.

I HAD A CHANCE TO SPEAK TO A SENIOR OFFICIAL AND HE SAID THE INVESTIGATION WILL BE THREEFOLD FROM THIS POINT.

FIRSTLY, WHAT WAS THE CONDITION OF THE TRAIN?

SECONDLY, HOW ABOUT THE TRAIN LINES?

WHAT ABOUT THE RAIN TRACK?

WAS THAT IN GOOD ENOUGH CONDITION AND WE LOOK AT A CONDUCTOR OF THE TRAIN KNOWING THEY WERE GOING INTO HOBOKEN STATION.

HOBOKEN STATION HERE, YOU CAN SEE BEHIND US.

IT'S SUCH A BESIDE TRANSIT HUB HERE IN THE REGION.

THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE COME THROUGH HERE EVERY DAY AND THE TRAIN CRASHED THIS MORNING WHEN MANY WERE COMMUTING TO AND FROM THEIR JOBS.

WE HAVE A SHOT EARLIER ON TODAY.

THE MAYOR OF HOBOKEN ARRIVED ON THE SCENE IN A MATTER OF MINUTES AFTER THE TRAIN CRASHED.

SHE MET WITH A NUMBER OF FIRST RESPONDERS AND A NUMBER OF THE PEOPLE WHO WITNESSED THE CRASH FIRSTHAND.

HERE'S WHAT SHE HAD TO SAY.

WHAT STOOD OUT TO ME IS THAT ON THE SCENE, GETTING PEOPLE OUT AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE.

OUR FIRE DEPARTMENT WAS HERE EXTRICATING SOME OF THE VICTIMS.

USED EQUIPMENT TO GET PEOPLE OUT BUT ALSO WHAT COMES THROUGH TO ME IS THINKING ABOUT THE FAMILY.

THERE WAS ONE VICTIM.

ONE FATALITY.

SHE IS FOR HOBOKEN AND SO OUR THOUGHTS AND OUR PRAYERS ARE WITH HER FAMILY RIGHT NOW.

THERE'S TWO OTHER PEOPLE THAT ARE IN SURGERY RIGHT NOW AND SO WE'RE THINKING ABOUT THEM AS WELL AND REALLY, ALL OF THE VICTIMS BUT I REALLY DO APPRECIATE ALL OF THE WORK THAT OUR FIRST RESPONDERS DID COMING TOGETHER MUTUALLY AND WORKING TOGETHER TO HANDLE THIS SITUATION.

Reporter: FOR THOSE WHO DON'T NECESSARILY LIVE IN HOBOKEN OR COMMUTE HERE, THIS IS ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT BUSY TRANSPORT HUBS IN THE REGION AND THIS HAPPENED AT A PEAK TIME WHEN PEOPLE COMMUTED TO AND FROM WORK.

FROM SOMEONE WHO KNOWS THE STATION WELL, HOW BUSY IT IS THAT KIND OF MORNING AND ATMOSPHERE AND SPECIFIC LOCATION WHERE THIS CRASH TOOK PLACE.

IT'S EXTREMELY BUSY.

PEOPLE TAKE THE P.A.T.H.

A THOUSAND OF PEOPLE TAKE THE P.A.T.H. ON HEAVY RAIL.

SO TH WHOLE AREA IS FILLED WITH PEOPLE DURING THE RUSH HOUR SO I WAS PLEASED TO HEAR THE COFFEE SHOP WAS CLOSED, OTHERWISE, THERE COULD HAVE PROBABLY BEEN MORE FATALITIES, BUT IT LITERALLY WENT RIGHT THROUGH THE COFFEE SHOP AREA.

BUT IT'S DEVASTATING TO HAVE ONE LOSS FOR HOBOKEN BUT WE'RE, AGAIN, THINKING ABOUT THAT FAMILY.

BUT IT'S DEFINITELY A HUGE, IT'S A REGIONAL CENTER AND WE HAVE SO MANY PEOPLE COMMUTING EVERY SINGLE DAY.

SO.

Reporter: ARE YOU CONFIDENT THAT THE TRACKS WERE IN ADEQUATE AND GOOD CONDITION?

ANY DOUBTS IN TERMS OF THE TRACKS AND WHETHER THAT MIGHT HAVE PLAYED A ROLE?

THOSE ARE QUESTIONS FOR THE NTSB AND NEW JERSEY TRANSIT TO SPEAK TO.

AT THIS POINT, THEY DON'T REALLY KNOW WHAT CAUSED THE CRASH AND HOW THIS HAPPENED AND I'M SURE THAT THEY WILL BE DOING A THOROUGH INVESTIGATION AND LETTING US KNOW AS SOON AS THEY CAN.

I THINK IT'S IMPORTANT TO TAKE ACTION TO PREVENT IT FROM HAPPENING IN THE FUTURE.

IN THE MEANTIME, PART OF MY JOB IS OBVIOUSLY THINKING ABOUT THOSE VICTIMS AND ALSO, WORKING WITH THE AGENCIES TO MAKE SURE THAT WE GET THE TRANSPORTATION UP AND MOVING.

SO I REALLY APPRECIATE P.A.T.H.

I'VE BEEN HERE, TALKING TO THEM SAYING, WE REALLY NEED TO GET THE P.A.T.H. BACK ONLINE AND REALLY APPRECIATE THAT.

AGENTS FROM NEW JERSEY TRANSIT AND THE P.A.T.H. LOOKING AT THE STRUCTURE OF THE BUILDING AND, YOU KNOW, DOING TESTING AND MAKING A DETERMINATION THAT P.A.T.H. COULD LITERALLY RIGHT NOW AS WE SPEAK, THE P.A.T.H. IS STARTING TO RUN.

SO THAT'S A HUGE RELIEF BECAUSE SO MANY HOBOKEN RESIDENTS RELY ON THE P.A.T.H. EVERY SINGLE DAY Z .

Reporter: WHAT ARE THE KEY PRIORITIES IN THE HOURS AND DAYS AHEAD NOT ONLY GETTING THE TRANSPORT, THE TRAINS BACK UP AND RUNNING BUT BEYOND THAT?

THE KEY PRIORITIES ARE THINKING ABOUT THE VICTIMS AND MAKING SURE THEY'RE TAKEN CARE OF.

AND THEN THE NEXT PRIORITY IS THE TRANSPORTATION AND GETTING THAT, COMMUNICATING OUT TO THE COMMUTERS AND GETTING THE TRANSPORTATION UP AND RUNNING AS QUICKLY AS ONLY.

ALTHOUGH, WE CANNOT COMPROMISE THE INVESTIGATION, SO IT'S A REAL BALANCING ACT.

WE RECOGNIZE WE CANNOT COMPROMISE THE INVESTIGATION BUT I ALSO HOPE THAT THEY'LL BE GETTING THE HEAVY RAIL OPERATION AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THANK YOU.

Reporter: AS THE EVENING COMMUTE CONTINUES HERE, THE P.A.T.H. TRAIN IS UP AND RUNNING AND THE MTA IS ENTIRELY SHUT DOWN AS THE NTSB CONTINUE THEIR INVESTIGATION.

RAF, BACK TO YOU.

JOINING US NOW, BRENDA FLANAGAN WHO ARRIVED SHORTLY AFTER THE CRASH.

YOU ARRIVED ABOUT 10:00.

WHAT HAVE YOU SEEN?

WHO HAVE YOU SPOKEN TO?

Reporter: WELL, WHEN WE GOT HERE, IT WAS CHAOTIC.

IT WAS FIRST RESPONDERS AND AMBULANCES.

WE WERE ABLE TO SPEAK WITH A MACHINIST WHO WORKS FOR THE TRANSIT ACTUALLY THERE WHEN THE ACCIDENT OCCURRED, WHEN THE CRASH OCCURRED.

HE SAID HE SAW THE TRAIN COMING IN AT A VERY HIGH RATE OF SPEED, IT BLEW THROUGH THESE BUMPERS THAT ARE DESIGNED TO STOP A TRAIN FROM ESSENTIALLY DOING WHAT IT DID.

IT WENT THROUGH THE TERMINAL.

THE TRAIN CAME UP OVER THE BUMPERS AND THROUGH THE TERMINAL, HIT THE FAR WALL.

AND THE FIRST CAR CRUMPLED UP AGAINST THE WALL.

THE IMPACT WAS SO EXTREME, IT BUCKLED SUPPORT PILLARS.

PART OF THE ROOF COLLAPSED, AND FELL DOWN ON TO THE FIRST CAR.

AT THAT POINT, SOME OF THE VICTIMS BEGAN TO TRY TO GET OUT OF THE TRAIN.

THIS IS A FOUR-CAR TRAIN WITH THE ENGINE IN THE BACK.

THE FIRST CAR, HALF OF IT WAS CRUMPLED.

THEY HAD TO BRING THE VICTIMS OUT THROUGH THE EMERGENCY EXIT WINDOWS.

THE OTHER PEOPLE CAME OUT THROUGH THE DOORS OF THE THREE REMAINING CARS.

BUT THE MACHINIST TOLD US THAT WHEN THIS TRAIN HIT, IT MADE SUCH A HUGE BOOM.

THE WHOLE BUILDING SHOOK.

THE LIGHTS FLICKERED AND THE STRUCTURAL DAMAGE TO THE BUILDING IS SO SEVERE THAT AT THIS POINT, NJ TRANSIT SERVICE HAS BEEN SUSPENDED.

IN TERMS OF THE INJURIES THAT WERE DONE, WE TALKED TO ONE BYSTANDER WHO SAID WHEN HE WENT IN TO TRY TO HELP, HE HAD TO STEP OVER THE BODY OF THE ONE FATALITY WHO WAS NOT ON THE TRAIN.

THIS PERSON WAS APPARENTLY, ACCORDING TO A NEWS CONFERENCE JUST HELD, KILLED BY FALLING DEBRIS FROM THE ROOF.

THAT'S HOW EXTREME THIS BUILDING SHOOK.

IT LITERALLY FELL APART.

OTHER PASSENGERS, CUTS, BROKEN BONES, LACERATIONS, TAKEN TO AREA HOSPITALS.

JERSEY CITY MEDICAL CENTER HAD 22 PEOPLE BROUGHT THERE.

SO IT WAS A CHAOTIC SCENE BUT EVERYBODY SEEMED TO RUN AND RALLY.

PEOPLE WHO WERE THERE IN THE TERMINAL RAN TO HELP.

AND AS GOVERNORS CHRISTIE AND CUOMO SAID, IT JUST SHOWS YOU THE KIND OF RESILIENCE THAT PEOPLE IN THIS AREA CAN BRING IN TO AN EVENT LIKE THIS.

A LOT OF PEOPLE WHEN THEY FIRST HEARD IT, THEY THOUGHT IT WAS A POSSIBLE TERROR ATTACK BUT REALIZED THAT THEY JUST NEEDED TO DO WHAT THEY COULD TO HELP.

SO THEY RAN IN THERE.

AT THIS POINT THOUGH, INVESTIGATORS ARE SAYING THERE IS NO EVIDENCE THAT THIS IS ANYTHING EXCEPT A VERY TRAGIC ACCIDENT.

AND WE'RE NOW WAITING FOR INVESTIGATORS, FEDERAL INVESTIGATORS, THE NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD, THE FEDERAL RAILWAY ADMINISTRATION WILL BE ON SCENE AND WILL LOOK INTO WHY THIS TRAIN WAS GOING SO FAST BECAUSE AT THIS POINT, THEY'RE TELLING US THEY DON'T KNOW WHY.

RAFAEL?

IT'S AMAZING THAT THERE WAS, SO FAR, ONLY ONE FATALITY.

GIVEN YOU LOOK AT THE STATION AND IT LOOKS LIKE ARMAGEDDON.

SO IT'S INCREDIBLY LUCKY THAT SO FAR IT'S ONE FATALITY BUT OF THE 108 INJURED, WHAT ARE HOSPITAL OFFICIALS TELLING YOU ABOUT THE EXTENT OF THOSE INJURIES?

Reporter: THE EXTENT OF THE INJURIES ARE BROKEN BONES, CUTS, LACERATIONS.

GOVERNOR CHRISTIE SAID THAT HE DIDN'T EXPECT THE FATALITY COUNT TO RISE.

THAT THERE WAS NO ONE SO SEVERELY OR CRITICALLY INJURED THAT WE HAVE THAT TO EXPECT, BUT SEVERE CUTS AND BRUISES, YOU TALK OF A COMMUTER TRAIN WHERE PEOPLE ARE ESSENTIALLY STANDING ROOM ONLY.

THEY STOPPED AT SECAUCUS JUNCTION, END OF THE VALLEY LINE.

THIS IS A RUSH HOUR TRAIN JAMMED FULL OF COMMUTERS HEADING INTO THE CITY AND WHEN IT HIT THE WALL, YOU CAN IMAGINE JUST PEOPLE GETTING THROWN ALL OVER THE PLACE, FALLING GLASS.

AND THOSE KINDS OF INJURIES.

BRENDA, YOU TALK ABOUT THE PEOPLE WHO HAVE GONE TRYING TO HELP.

WHAT CAN PEOPLE DO WHO WANT TO HELP?

RIGHT NOW, I GUESS THE BEST THING TO DO IS TO TRY TO STAY AWAY FROM THAT SECTION OF THE STATION.

IT'S RINGED OFF.

PEOPLE ARE INVESTIGATING.

AND I'M SURE THE SIGHT SEERS ARE THE LAST THINGS THEY WANT TO SEE.

THE CONDUCTORS, I UNDERSTAND, CRITICALLY INJURED BUT CONSCIOUS AND TALKING TO AUTHORITIES.

HE IS COOPERATING.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

MY PLEASURE.

NJTV NEWS IS ALSO STANDING BY.

HOW IS IT GOING THERE?

IT IS A BUSY DAY IN HOBOKEN, NOT JUST FROM COMMUTERS WHO FOUND THEMSELVES STRANDED BUT SWARMED WITH MEDIA.

A HALF MILE NORTH WHERE THE PRESS CONFERENCE WAS EARLIER THIS AFTERNOON.

WE'VE SEEN AMBULANCES RUNNING BACK AND FORTH, ALTHOUGH, AT THIS POINT IN THE AFTERNOON, MOST PEOPLE HAVE BEEN TRANSPORTED.

ERIN, YOU'RE FAMILIAR WITH HOBOKEN STATION, AS I UNDERSTAND IT.

TELL US ABOUT IT.

IT'S USUALLY A BUSY HUB, ESPECIALLY AT RUSH HOUR, CORRECT?

ABSOLUTELY.

AND WITH THE TIME THIS ACCIDENT OCCURRED THIS MORNING, THAT'S WHEN THE TRAIN STATION WOULD HAVE BEEN AT ITS BUSIEST.

THIS IS A COMMUTER HUB WITH NJ TRANSIT TRAINS RUNNING FROM MANY DIRECTIONS AND OFTENTIMES, THOSE PEOPLE GET ON THE P.A.T.H.

TRAINS ONE LAYER BELOW AND MAKE THEIR WAY INTO MANTLE AND VICE VERSA.

THE TRAINS HERE COME ONLY ABOUT 40 FEET OR SO AWAY FROM THE TICKET COUNTERS, THE FLOWER SHOPS, THE COFFEE SHOP AND THE STAGING AREA.

THIS IS WHERE WE'RE LEARNING MOST OF THE STRUCTURAL DAMAGE OCCURRED AND WHERE MANY OF THE INJURIES WERE SUSTAINED.

ERIN, THERE'S BEEN REPORTS THAT THERE WERE ALREADY CONCERNS ABOUT STRUCTURAL PROBLEMS AT THE HOBOKEN STATION.

DO YOU KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT THOSE PROBLEMS AND DO YOU KNOW IF ANYBODY IS SPECULATING THEY CONTRIBUTED TO THIS ACCIDENT?

GOVERNORS CHRISTIE AND CUOMO TOURED THE DAMAGE BEFORE THEY BRIEFED THE MEDIA THIS AFTERNOON.

THERE WERE BEAMS DOWN EVERYWHERE AND SOME PEOPLE SUSTAINED INJURIES FROM FALLING DEBRIS.

PEOPLE NOT NECESSARILY ON THE TRAIN OR IN THE PATH OF IT.

NOW, THIS IS AN AREA THAT WAS HEAVILY DAMAGED BY FLOODING DURING HURRICANE SANDY AND CORRODED MANY OF THE TRACKS, AN AREA THAT HAD TO ALREADY REBUILD ONCE AND NOW LOOKING TO DO IT AGAIN.

YOU TALK ABOUT THE TWO GOVERNORS WHO GAVE A PRESS CONFERENCE EARLIER.

DID THEY SAY ANYTHING THAT ADVANCED THE STORY?

ANYTHING NEW THAT WE DIDN'T KNOW UNTIL THEY SPOKE?

GOVERNOR CHRISTIE DID CLARIFY A NUMBER OF CASUALTIES, REVIVED THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE WHO DIED AS A RESULT OF THIS ATTACK DOWN TO ONE AND CLARIFIED THAT WAS A WOMAN AND SUSTAINED THE INJURY OUTSIDE OF THE TRAIN BUT MOST INJURIES DID OCCUR ON BOARD THE TRAIN AND HAD THE NUMBER AT ABOUT 108 AND PEOPLE ARE TAKEN TO AREA HOSPITALS HERE.

THAT SOME WERE ABLE TO WALK OVER AND OTHERS BUSSED OVER VIA NJ TRANSIT BUSES AND OTHERS TAKEN TO THE HOSPITAL VIA AMBULANCE.

THE GOVERNORS ALSO SAID THEY DON'T WANT TO SPECULATE A CAUSE FOR THE ACCIDENT AND SAID IT WAS A FOUR-CAR TRAIN WITH A LOCOMOTIVE IN THE BACK AND THE CONDUCTOR IS FULLY COOPERATING WITH AUTHORITIES AND SAID IT'S IMPORTANT NOT TO SPECULATE WHAT MIGHT HAVE CAUSED THE TRAIN TO RUN INTO THE STATION BUT DID SAY THEY KNOW THE TRAIN WAS GOING FAR TOO FAST.

WE KNOW THAT.

IT WAS GOING TOO FAST.

SO THE QUESTION OF POSITIVE TRAIN CONTROL WAS RAISED AT THE PRESS CONFERENCE, POSITIVE TRAIN CONTROL IS A SYSTEM THAT AUTOMATICALLY SLOWS DOWN OR STOPS THE TRAIN TO MINIMIZE HUMAN ERROR.

OBVIOUSLY, THAT WASN'T IN PLACE HERE.

WHAT DID THE GOVERNOR SAY ABOUT THAT?

WE DID ASK THE GOVERNOR THAT QUESTION, A NUMBER OF MEDIA AT THE PRESS CONFERENCE TODAY.

BOTH GOVERNORS REFUSED TO TALK MORE ABOUT POSITIVE TRAIN CONTROLS AND WHETHER IT COULD FACTOR IN THE ACCIDENTS BUT AMTRAK TRAINS DERAILED AND THAT STARTED THE MOVEMENT TOWARD TRAIN AND RAIL SAFETY.

I'VE DONE A NUMBER OF STORIES ON THIS WITH MANY OF OUR LE LEGISLATORS ON CAPITOL HILL.

IT'S A DIFFICULT ISSUE IN CONGRESS BECAUSE A LOT DON'T UNDERSTAND THE POWER OF THE RAIL SYSTEM THROUGH THE NORTHEAST CORRIDOR.

FOR NEW YORKERS, NEW JERSEYIANS IN CONNECTICUT AND PENNSYLVANIA, THIS IS HOW WE GET AROUND.

PEOPLE SAY, I GUESS EVERYONE WILL HAVE TO DRIVE.

THIS IS NOT A PLACE WHERE PEOPLE OWN CARS.

THIS IS A LIFELINE IN AND OUT OF ONE OF NORTH AMERICA'S MAJOR HUBS.

SO ERIN, WITH THE TRAIL DISRUPTIONS, HOW ARE PEOPLE GOING TO MAKE THEIR COMMUTES TOMORROW AND MANY DAYS AFTERWARDS?

WHAT ARE THE ALTERNATIVES DEVISED?

THE GOVERNOR MADE CLEAR TODAY THAT RUNNING, THIS IS THE PORT AUTHORITY NETWORK THAT RUNS TRAINS UNDER THE HUDSON RIVER BETWEEN NEWARK, JOURNAL SQUARE, HOBOKEN CITY.

THOSE TRAINS WILL BE UTILIZING THE SAME STATIONS THAT HAD PROBLEMS TODAY.

NEW JERSEY TRANSIT, LOOK TO THE TWITTER, NEWS STATIONS, CHECK ONLINE AND ALSO A TRIP PLANNER TOOL TO FIND OUT WHEN AND WHEN THEIR TRAINS MIGHT BE RUNNING.

CERTAIN LINES ARE DOWN.

THE BUS SYSTEM IS PROBABLY THE BEST WAY TO GO TONIGHT BUT IF YOU WERE LOOKING TO UTILIZE THE HOBOKEN PATH TERMINAL, THAT WILL BE OPEN TOMORROW MORNING.

GOING BACK TO THE GENERAL SAFETY CONDITIONS OF NJ TRANSIT.

I DON'T KNOW MUCH ABOUT ITS HISTORY BUT I'VE BEEN AROUND THIS AREA FOR A LONG TIME, AND I HAVE NEVER HEARD OF AN ACCIDENT LIKE THIS.

I MEAN, AM I RIGHT?

THIS IS UNPRECEDENTED.

YEAH, I CAN TELL YOU, I GREW UP IN THE AREA AS WELL.

AND FOR ME TOO, THIS IS UNPRECEDENTED.

ALTHOUGH, WE HAVE SEEN A NUMBER OF RAIL SAFETY PROBLEMS ALL THROUGHOUT THE NORTHEAST CORRIDOR ESPECIALLY OVER THE LAST COUPLE OF YEARS.

FIGHTING ON CAPITOL HILL OVER WHO EXACTLY IS IN CHARGE OF RAIL SAFETY AND RAIL SECURITY, WHERE THE FUNDS ARE GOING TO COME FROM NOT ONLY TO REBUILD THE STATIONS BUT BETTER SAFETY EFFORTS IN PLACE BUT A DAY LIKE TODAY, IT IS UNPRECEDENTED.

I TALKED TO A GENTLEMAN IN THE TICKET BOOTH AND THE TICKET BOOTH IS ABOUT 30 OR 40 FEET AWAY FROM WHERE THE TRAIN STOPPED.

IT PULLED INTO TRACK FIVE AND FROM MY MEMORY, THAT WOULD BE TO THE LEFT SIDE OF THE TRAIN STATION.

JUST RIGHT IN FRONT OF THAT VISITOR'S AREA WE WERE TALKING ABOUT.

BUT HE TOLD ME THAT IT WAS JUST A REGULAR DAY AT WORK LIKE ANY OTHER.

ALL OF THE SUDDEN, HE SAW THE BRAKE BRIGHT LIGHTS AND HEARD AN EXPLOSION.

WE SPOKE FOR ABOUT FOUR HOURS AFTER THE TRAIN CRASH AND HE WAS SHAKEN UP.

WHAT'S THE REACTION?

WE KNOW THE RESILIENCY OF THE PEOPLE OF NEW JERSEY AND NEW YORK AND TRAGEDIES, REACTIONS.

HOW ARE THEY REACTING?

YOU USED EXACTLY THE RIGHT WORD THERE.

RESILIENCE.

THAT'S WHAT GOVERNOR CHRISTIE SAID DURING THE PRESSER.

WE'LL GET THIS BACK UP AS SOON AS HUMANLY POSSIBLE.

AND GOVERNOR CHRISTIE TOOK A STEP AND THE MIKE AND SAID, JUDGE US BY OUR ACTIONS.

IF YOU DON'T WANT TO JUDGE US BY OUR WORDS, JUDGE US BY OUR ACTIONS.

THIS IS AN AREA THAT HAS BEEN THROUGH PROBLEMS.

SUPER STORM SANDY BACK TO LIFE AND NORMALCY AND NEW YORKERS AND NEW JERSEYIANS ARE RESILIENT.

THE TERRORIST ATTACK, THE FOILED PLOT.

AND HE INVOKED THAT PASSION AND SAID THESE ARE THE MOST RESILIENT PEOPLE.

WE'LL REBUILD THE STATION AND GET THIS NETWORK UP AND RUNNING AGAIN.

ERIN, THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THANK YOU.

LET'S CHECK IN NOW WITH 'METROFOCUS' CONTRIBUTOR ANDREA VASQUEZ.

WHAT HAVE YOU SEEN SINCE YOU'VE BEEN THERE IN THE HOBOKEN TODAY AND WHO HAVE YOU SPOKEN TO?

HI, I'VE SPOKEN TO A LOCAL RESIDENT HERE WHO WAS NOT IN THE TRAIN OR NEAR THE RAIN STATION BY THE TIME THE INCIDENT HAPPENED THIS MORNING BUT DOES COMMUTE ON THE P.A.T.H. TRAIN AND BY THE TIME SHE WAS GETTING READY, SHE WAS GETTING TEXT MESSAGES AND PHONE CALLS FROM LOVED ONES OUT OF TOWN CHECKING IN TO SEE IF SHE WAS OKAY AND BY TIME WE WERE TALKING A COUPLE HOURS AFTER THE INCIDENT, SHE WAS STILL GETTING THE PHONE CALLS.

A LOT OF THE RESIDENTS IN THE AREA I WAS TALKING TO WERE NOT NECESSARILY GETTING BUT CONCERN FOR THE ONE FATALITY THAT WE HAVE CONFIRMED AND FOR THE DAMAGE TO THE STATION.

IT'S A HISTORIC STATION OVER 100 YEARS OLD AND FOR THE COMMUNITY.

THE PEOPLE WHO ARE HURT.

A LOT OF HEARTS WERE GOING OUT TO THE COMMUTERS JUST TRYING TO GET INTO WORK.

AND I UNDERSTAND YOU'VE ALSO TALKED TO SOME BUSINESS PEOPLE THERE?

YES, I DID SPEAK TO BUSINESS OWNER WHO ACTUALLY OWNS SEVERAL BUSINESSES IN THE AREA.

ONE IS JUST A FEW BLOCKS FROM HERE ON THE WATERFRONT AND THE OTHER ONE FROM THE OTHER SIDE OF THE TRAIN STATION.

SO VERY CENTRAL TO WHERE THE INCIDENT WAS.

AND THEY'VE ALREADY BEEN DEALING WITH P.A.T.H. TRAINS BEING DOWN ON THE WEEKENDS, THE SERVICES DOWN FROM AUGUST TO DECEMBER ON THE WEEKENDS INTO HOBOKEN.

BECAUSE OF REGULAR MAINTENANCE AND SERVICE TO THE STATION.

SO ON TOP OF THAT, THEY'RE GOING TO BE DEALING WITH THIS LIMITED ACCESS TO THE TRAIN STATION BY NJ TRANSIT AND NOT ONLY IS IT AFFECTING WEEKDAY COMMUTERS BUT A WHOLE WEEKEND ECONOMY HERE.

THERE'S NIGHTLIFE AND BARS AND DAYTIME RESTAURANTS AND SHOPPING.

AND BECAUSE OF HOBOKEN'S POSITION RIGHT ACROSS THE WATER FROM NEW YORK, IT'S ALWAYS BEEN SET UP TO HAVE A LOT OF BACK AND FORTH TRAFFIC BETWEEN HERE AND THE CITY.

WHEN IT WAS FIRST ESTABLISHED, IT ACCOMMODATED UP TO 20,000 NEW YORKERS ON THE WEEKEND COMING FOR PICNICS AND HANGING IN THE WATERFRONT AREA AND THAT'S STILL A STRONG BUSINESS.

SO HE AND THE OTHER BUSINESSES ARE REALLY BRACING FOR THE IMPACT THAT THIS IS GOING TO HAVE ON THEM BUT MORE THAN THE LOST BUSINESS, HE WAS CONCERNED FOR THE COMMUNITY AND SAID IT'S A TIGHT KNIT COMMUNITY AND ONE SQUARE MILE.

SO AS SOON AS HE HEARD ABOUT WHAT WAS GOING ON, BEYOND HIS THOUGHTS ABOUT THE LOSS OF PROFITS AND BUSINESS COMING UP, HE WAS TURNING HIS ATTENTION TO SERVING THE FIRST RESPONDERS, MAKING SURE THEY WERE GETTING FED.

WHEN WE WERE OUT HERE THIS MORNING TOO, PEOPLE WERE COMING AROUND WITH PIZZA AND BAGELS AND COFFEE AND JUST BACK-UPS FOR THE FIRST RESPONDERS AND PEOPLE WHO WERE OUT HERE R TRYING TO TAKE CARE OF THINGS BUT THE FOCUS IS ON THE PEOPLE IN THE COMMUNITY.

PEOPLE IN HOBOKEN HAVE BEEN THROUGH A LOT OVER THE LAST COUPLE OF YEARS.

AND WE KNOW IN 2012, SUPER STORM SANDY HIT IT PRETTY BADLY.

THE RESILIENCY OF THE PEOPLE, IT'S EVIDENT, IT SOUNDS LIKE.

IT IS.

IT'S UNFORTUNATE, BUT THE REGION HAS BEEN TESTED AND IT IS PRACTICED.

AND THIS BUSINESS OWNER I SPOKE TO ECHOED WHAT GOVERNOR CHRISTIE AND GOVERNOR CUOMO SAID AT THEIR PRESS CONFERENCE EARLIER THIS AFTERNOON IS THAT MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE, THIS REGION, THE INFRASTRUCTURE, LAW ENFORCEMENT, STAFF, AND THE COMMUNITY, THE PEOPLE WHO LIVE AND WORK AROUND HERE HAVE BEEN THROUGH THIS.

WHETHER IT'S BEEN THROUGH NATURAL DISASTERS LIKE IRENE AND SANDY OR OTHER EMERGENCIES, EVEN AS RECENTLY AS SOME OF THE BOMBS THAT WERE FOUND IN THE AREA A FEW WEEKS AGO.

THEY KIND OF SET IT UP NOT ON THE SAME LEVEL BUT IN THE SENSE THAT THEY'VE BEEN THROUGH THIS BEFORE IN TERMS OF WORKING TOGETHER, RESIDENTS KNOW HOW TO RESPOND, KNOW TO BACK OFF AND LET AGENCIES DO THEIR JOB AND THEY WILL GET THROUGH IT LIKE THEY HAVE WITH EVERYTHING ELSE.

ANDREA, THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THANK YOU, RAF.

THANK YOU FOR WATCHING AT HOME.

WE HOPE YOU CONTINUE TO CHECK IN WITH 'METROFOCUS' ONLINE AND THE LATEST BREAKING DEVELOPMENTS CONCERNING TODAY'S TRAGIC TRAIN CRASH IN HOBOKEN.

I'M RAFAEL PI ROMAN AND AS WE LEAVE YOU TONIGHT, HERE'S SOME OF THE SIGHTS AND SOUNDS IN HOBOKEN.

RAN INTO THE TERMINAL.

HOW FAR BEYOND DID IT GO?

WELL, I MEAN, IF I HAD TO ESTIMATE, I ASSUME IT WOULD COME PRETTY CLOSE BUT NOT QUITE.

BUT I WOULD SAY MAYBE 100 FEET.

TOO FAR.

YES.

DEFINITELY.

DID IT ACTUALLY CRASH INTO THE WAITING AREA?

IT DIDN'T CRASH INTO THE WAITING AREA.

THERE'S A METAL THERE TO STOP THE TRAIN, I'M SASSUMING, IF IT ROLLS TOO FAR.

IN THIS CASE, IT MADE IT IN THE BARRICADE.

A METAL BARRICADE.

I DO NOT KNOW WHAT CAUSED THE ROOF OF THAT PORTION OF THE TERMINAL TO COLLAPSE BUT CERTAINLY.

CAN YOU WALK THROUGH WHAT YOU HEARD?

I JUST HEARD VERY LOUD AND WHAT YOU WOULD ASSUME TO BE A BANG.

VERY LOUD CRASHING.

AND I EXITED THE OFFICE.

FOLKS WERE RUNNING IN THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION, OBVIOUSLY.

SPRINTING.

WHAT TYPE OF INJURIES DID YOU SEE?

BLEEDING FROM THE HEAD.

YOU SAW FOLKS ON THE GROUND, COULDN'T MOVE FOR WHATEVER REASON.

THE FOLKS, YOU KNOW, IN A SITUATION LIKE THAT, THERE'S JUST A LOT OF CRYING.

HOLY CRAP.

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