Minor derailment causes commuter chaos in New York City

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A minor derailment Friday morning at New York Penn Station caused major service disruptions and cancelations on NJ Transit trains and Long Island Rail Road the rest of the day.

An Amtrak Acela train partially derailed at about 9 a.m. as it was leaving NY Penn. It then clipped a NJ Transit train that was coming into the station. Both trains were traveling at a slow rate of speed, according to rail officials. At least two people suffered minor injuries.

All NJ Transit service was suspended into and out of NY Penn following the incident. Only limited outbound service was planned for the evening rush.  Only one inbound New Jersey CoastLine train and one inbound Northeast Corridor train will run every hour.

Long Island Rail Road warnied customers to anticipate delays and cancelations for the evening commute. To avoid delays, customers were encouraged to leave New York City before 4:00 PM  or delay departure from the city until after 8:00 PM or depart from Atlantic Terminal, Brooklyn. 

Amtrak Acela and Northeast Regional service was operating with delays.

Passenger Jordan Geary described the sound as "an explosion" when the trains hit and the windows blew out in his NJ Transit rail car.  Nobody appeared to be seriously injured in the incident.

Photos posted on social media show dents, scrapes and some twisted metal on the side of one train.

Amtrak described the derailment as "minor" and reported that the rear of the departing train remained on the track.  All 248 passengers were able to get onto the platform and exit the station safely.

The Amtrak Acela Express Train 2151 train was leaving the station to head to Washington, D.C. and the NJ Transit train was arriving from New Jersey.

NJ Transit tickets were being cross-honored system wide with busses, private carriers and PATH trains at New York Penn Station, Hoboken, and 33rd St. in New York. Customers were encouraged to seek alternate transportation.