A serious train accident has just mourned the United States.

At least three people were killed and several others injured in a train derailment in the state of Montana on Saturday, state-owned Amtrak said.

Eight of the train's ten cars derailed at around 4 p.m. near Joplin, a small town near the border with Canada.

The railway company further said that about 141 passengers and 16 crew members were on board the train that ran from Chicago to Seattle.

Causes not yet defined

Amtrak also said it has dispatched teams to the scene who "are working with local authorities to transport injured passengers and safely evacuate all other passengers." Montana Disaster and Emergency Services Coordinator Amanda Frickel told the

New York Times

that "more than 50 people have been injured." "All the people alive were taken from the carcass" of the train, she added.

The causes of the accident were not clear at first.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), a federal agency, announced on Twitter that it had opened an investigation.

Video footage posted to social media and disseminated by local media showed people waiting near the tracks, luggage strewn beside them, watching derailed cars, at least one of which overturned on its side.

Frequent accidents

The US rail network suffers from chronic underfunding and fatal accidents occur regularly.

In February 2118, two people were killed and 70 injured in a collision between two trains, one carrying 147 people and the other freight, in South Carolina.

In December 2017, three people were killed in a derailment in Washington state that overturned several cars from a bridge over a highway.

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