Tourist Train Derails in Skagway; Injuries Minor

A tourist train derailed Wednesday afternoon north of Skagway and initial reports stated some passengers received minor injuries.

The White Pass Yukon Railroad runs scenic train tours between Skagway and Carcross, Yukon. Railroad president John Finlayson confirmed the derailment and said the company was still investigating the cause. He said did not want to comment on any injuries while passengers were being treated and evaluated.

Coast Guard Spokesman Kip Wadlow said Air Station Sitka helicopters were put on standby to assist, but were not called out.

Bartlett Regional Hospital in Juneau was notified and went into incident command about 3:45 p.m., according to spokesman Jim Strader. Shortly before 4:30 p.m., Strader said Bartlett received notification to stand down.

Skagway municipal officials and Skagway fire and police departments on Wednesday referred all questions about the incident to White Pass.

Skagway tourism director Buckwheat Donahue said he was told the incident took place near Summit Lake along the border with Canada. He said he was also told by White Pass representatives that trains were cancelled the rest of Wednesday and possibly part of Thursday.

The railroad was built in 1898 during the Klondike Gold Rush. Now it services as one of Skagway’s primary scenic attractions for visitors, traveling over White Pass between Skagway and Carcross, Yukon.

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