Trump Says Train Derailment Bolsters Case for Infrastructure Plan

Updated on
  • At least six dead in Amtrak derailment in Washington state
  • White House plans to release infrastructure plan in January

A derailed train is seen on southbound Interstate 5 on Monday, Dec. 18, 2017, in DuPont, Wash.

Photographer: Rachel La Corte/AP

President Donald Trump said an Amtrak passenger train derailment that killed at least six people in Washington state bolstered his case for investing in the nation’s crumbling infrastructure.

“The train accident that just occurred in DuPont, WA shows more than ever why our soon to be submitted infrastructure plan must be approved quickly,” Trump said in a tweet. “Seven trillion dollars spent in the Middle East while our roads, bridges, tunnels, railways (and more) crumble! Not for long!”

Trump has said he will introduce a $1 trillion proposal to upgrade roads, bridges, airports and other public infrastructure. The White House plan calls for allocating at least $200 billion in federal funds over 10 years to spur at least $800 billion in spending by states, localities and the private sector. Trump plans to release details of the proposal in early January, a senior administration official said.

The high-speed train that derailed Monday was traveling for the first time on newly-built tracks at the time of the accident, according to the Associated Press.

The accident prompted the closure of all southbound lanes of Interstate 5 in Pierce County near Mounts Road, the Washington State Department of Transportation said on its website. Amtrak suspended service south of Seattle. The National Transportation Safety Board is gathering information about the accident, a spokesman for the agency said.

In a follow-up tweet, Trump addressed victims of the accident.

“My thoughts and prayers are with everyone involved in the train accident in DuPont, Washington. Thank you to all of our wonderful First Responders who are on the scene. We are currently monitoring here at the White House,” Trump tweeted.

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