A Manhattan-bound F train derailed in an underground stretch in Queens on Friday morning, injuring 19 people and forcing the evacuation of hundreds of passengers.
The train, carrying about 1,000 straphangers, derailed on an express track near the local station at Broadway and 65th St. in Woodside shortly before 10:30 a.m., officials said.
Four of the 19 people who were injured were transported to local hospitals in serious condition, officials said.
Riders described a nerve-rattling experience as the train’s cars broke from the track.
“You could just feel yourself coming off your seat,” said Irvelle Cadet, 24, who was riding on the train to get to a job interview. “I was sideways at one point. Then the conductor came over the speakers to say it derailed.”
Six of the train’s eight cars derailed, with only the first and last remaining on the rails. When the toppled train screeched and smashed to a halt, passengers found themselves in the dark. With smoke and dust filling the air, riders feared a fiery death.
“It was crazy,” said Robin Henaw, 22, who had been on his way to work and was listening to music in the first car. “The lights turned off and there were sparks from outside. Everyone was worried about flames. The smoke was pretty heavy. People were handing out tissues. It looked like some people were passing out because of the smoke.”
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SOURCE: CAITLIN NOLAN , PETE DONOHUE
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS