Train Derails at Chicago Airport, Makes It Halfway Up the Stairs

At just before 3 am CT this morning, a Blue Line train at Chicago's O'Hare airport jumped the rails. And kept going.

There were 32 reported injuries—everyone's currently listed in "good" or "fair" condition, according to the Chicago Tribunein the wake of the derailment, the cause of which is still not known. The effect, though, was quite a spectacle. The train made it almost to the top of the stair/escalator well before it finally stopped.

Here's another shot from the side:

Train Derails at Chicago Airport, Makes It Halfway Up the Stairs

The two looming questions in the wake of the crash, as you might expect, are how did this happen and how do we clean it up? They're both trickier than you might expect; while the train was moving faster than normal upon approach, so far the investigation hasn't coughed up any direct cause.

As for getting the train off the steps, one can imagine that there's no clear protocol in place for this situation. Outside of a half dozen action movies, it's an unprecedented occurance. And that it happened at O'Hare—the second-busiest airport in the country—complicates things further. The Tribune reports that the best option might be to cut the train up into pieces and remove it a bit at time, a process that will likely take up to 24 hours.

In the meantime, let's just be glad that everyone was (relatively) okay, and be thankful that we're all too lazy to take the stairs. [Chicago Tribune]

Train Derails at Chicago Airport, Makes It Halfway Up the Stairs

AP Photo/Andrew A. Nelles

Train Derails at Chicago Airport, Makes It Halfway Up the Stairs

AP Photo/Andrew A. Nelles

Top image: AP Photo/NBC Chicago, Kenneth Webster