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Train Hits South Station Barricade, 18 Injured

This article is more than 10 years old.
The train hit this bumper at the end of the track but suffered little damage. (Monica Brady-Myerov/WBUR)
The train hit this bumper at the end of the track but suffered little damage. (Monica Brady-Myerov/WBUR)

The MBTA says operator error caused a commuter train accident at Boston's South Station on Tuesday that injured 18 people.

A train on the Framingham-Worcester line hit a bumper at the end of the track, while traveling only one or two miles per hour. MBTA spokesman Joe Pesaturo said the operator told investigators it was his mistake.

"Every engineer is in the front car. He had the bumper right in front of him," Pesaturo said. "His statement is that he misjudged the distance."

Pesaturo said the engineer told investigators he was mistaken about the train's length, and said distractions such as cell phone use or texting were not factors. The engineer will be tested for alcohol and drugs, which is standard procedure.

Fire department spokesman Steve MacDonald said 15 to 20 people were being treated Tuesday morning for minor injuries.

Pesaturo said some of the people on board the train had been standing to exit and fell after the collision.

The station has not been closed.

This program aired on September 15, 2009. The audio for this program is not available.

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