07 February, 2018
Amtrak said 139 passengers and eight staff members were aboard the train.
The injured were taken to hospitals in the region for treatment.
The National Transportation Safety Board is beginning an investigation into the cause of the crash, which is unknown.
The two deceased were Amtrak personnel. The train was headed south, the governor said. Police report that the CSX freight was unoccupied at the time of the high-speed crash.
The Silver Star, en route from NY to Miami with almost 150 people aboard, was going an estimated 59mph when it struck the empty CSX train at around 2.45am, Governor Henry McMaster said. "The first engine of the freight train was torn up, and the single engine of the passenger train is barely recognizable".
Officials added that although 20,000 litres of fuel spilt following the crash, there was no danger to the public. Smith said he and his friend saw passengers limping along the tracks, while others tried to get everyone out of the cars.
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Anyone seeking info about passengers on Train 91 should call the Amtrak info line at 1-800-523-9101.
CSX owns and controls the Columbia Subdivision tracks where the crash occurred and is responsible for overseeing the dispatching of trains and signal systems, local media reported quoting Anderson.
The Red Cross said it was sending volunteers to assist. "You knew we'd hit something or we'd derailed", Pettaway said over the phone.
The President tweeted: "My thoughts and prayers are with all the victims of this morning's train collision in SC".
A spokesman for the South Carolina Emergency Management Division has confirmed 70 people have been take to hospital with injuries ranging from "scratches to more severe broken bones". The driver of the truck was killed and three sanitation workers were injured.