Many international travelers ride Amtrak every year. Amtrak Train 188, traveling from Washington D.C. to New York, was carrying several international passengers at the time it derailed. According to media reports, passengers from Spain, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Albania, and India were onboard; one man from Italy was among the eight killed in the crash.
If you were a foreign passenger aboard Amtrak 188 or the family member of a foreign passenger, there are several resources set up to help after the derailment.
Resources from Amtrak and National Transportation Safety Board
The first number to call is Amtrak’s Incident Hotline at 800-523-9101. This number will connect foreign callers with the latest information. In the company blog, Amtrak’s CEO stated they are working to accommodate all passengers with lodging, transportation, and other services. This is especially important for displaced foreign travelers.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is another important resource. Their Transportation Disaster Assistance Division (TDA) hotline at 800-683-9369 is the first connection to your U.S. consulate in these situations. By calling their hotline, you can obtain translation services, direct connections to the appropriate consulate or embassy, and obtain information on passenger status.
U.S. Department of State & Foreign Consulate Resources
In the event of a mass transit accident involving foreign passengers, the U.S. Department of State works with foreign governments to ensure the safety of their people. Victims and their family should get in touch with their own consulate in the Philadelphia or New York area to secure the services or assistance they need. The Department of State offers a list of embassies, consulates, and honorary consulates. Find your country and then find the embassy or consulate closed to you in Philadelphia, New York, and/or Washington, DC.
It may also be beneficial to contact your local foreign travel department if you cannot get the assistance you need from the consulate.
Further Resources Available
Direct any questions about filing a lawsuit or any rumors you hear about foreigners’ rights to file a lawsuit to a local attorney. If you have questions, call 215-642-2335. Also be sure to refer to our other general guide for victims of the Amtrak derailment.