Train derails, knocks house off its foundation in northwest Atlanta

By: Richard Elliot , Audrey Washington

Updated:

ATLANTA - Crews with CSX have cleared away most of the train cars that derailed early Thursday and crashed into a home in northwest Atlanta.

Around 3 a.m. Thursday, 14 rail cars of the northbound CSX train left the tracks near the 1300 block of Andrews Street, CSX spokesman Rob Doolittle said.

The rail cars then hit a man’s home, injuring him.

Channel 2’s Richard Elliot watched as crews used heavy equipment to haul away the long rail cars.

It wasn’t an easy job because the rail cars weigh several tons each.

Atlanta-Journal Constitution photographer John Spink captured the shocking scene on video.

NewsDrone 2 flew over the wreckage as well. From the air, the drone footage showed how crews had already brought in new rails to replace the ones destroyed in the crash.

“I never thought something like that would happen like a train coming off the tracks,” neighbor Tamaya Tucker told Elliot.

The homeowner was in bed and the impact flipped him into the rail car.


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His son said neighbors came to the rescue.

“When they found him, he was inside the train. They pulled him out of the train car,” the man’s son said, asking not to be identified.

In a statement, CSX said: “Safety is CSX’s highest priority, and our goal is zero accidents. CSX’s focus right now remains on ensuring the safety of nearby residents while developing a plan to restore the scene. The cause of the incident will be investigated as part of the recovery effort.”

Atlanta Fire Rescue said it’s a miracle the homeowner survived.

“I mean, the entire backside of the house is removed from its foundation. The deck has been moved about 10 feet from its location and to survive is incredible. I’m sure it was a very traumatic experience for him,” Sgt. Cortez Stafford, with Atlanta Fire Rescue, said.

Neighbors told Elliot that the homeowner suffered a broken leg and is recovering at Grady Memorial Hospital.

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