Thursday, November 15, 2012
4 Dead 17 Wounded in Midland Veterans Parade
Four people died and 17 others were taken to a hospital when a train crashed into a parade float honoring veterans in Midland, Texas, late this afternoon.
"From what we know right now, apparently there were two fatalities at the time of the incident and two more at the hospital that passed away after they'd been transported," Midland Police Chief Price Robinson said.
Midland Memorial Hospital confirmed the four deaths to ABC News.
Of the 17 injured at the hospital, 10 were in critical condition and seven were in stable condition, Robinson said.
The float was one of two 18-wheel trailers carrying wounded veterans and their families during the parade when a train approached, according to Hamid Vatankhah, a witness who owns a used car lot near the scene of the crash.
The first truck crossed the tracks in time, but the second did not, Vatankhah said, adding that sirens from the police cars in the parade may have drowned out the sound of the approaching train.
"Some people were able to jump, and some that were sitting in wheelchairs on top couldn't do nothing about it," Vatankhah said.
The floats in the Show of Support's Hunt for Heroes parade were crossing Union Pacific train tracks near Garfield Avenue en route to a Show of Support Banquet around 4:35 p.m. local time, according to ABC News affiliate KMID-TV.