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One dead, 60 hurt as tourist train, truck collide in West Virginia

By Luke Swiderski

(Reuters) - One man was killed and more than 60 people were injured when a logging truck collided with a tourist train on Friday in the remote Allegheny Mountains of West Virginia, the governor's office said.

The diesel train carrying at least 60 passengers, was about 50 minutes into its crawl through dense spruce forests in the high country wilderness when the collision occurred at 1:30 p.m. near Cheat Bridge, said Amy Shuler Goodwin, spokeswoman for Governor Earl Ray Tomblin.

The crash at the border of Randolph and Pocahontas counties, resulted in two of the train cars overturning, killing the man, believed to be the driver of the truck, she said.

"Two of the cars actually had flipped," Goodwin said. It was not immediately known how many cars the engine was pulling.

Ten ambulances and one school bus were used to transport 67 people to Davis Memorial Hospital in Elkins, West Virginia, said a hospital spokeswoman.

Five of the injured on board the train, the Cheat Mountain Salamander, were in serious condition, said Larry Messina, spokesman for the West Virginia Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety.

Signal lights at the train crossing were working properly and there were no skid marks on the roadway, said a person close to the investigation, who declined to be identified.

The Salamander, one of several tourist trains operated by Durbin & Greenbrier Valley Railroad, travels through "some of the wildest mountain wilderness you will ever experience," according to the railroad website.

"Even by West Virginia standards, this is a very remote area," Messina said.

(Editing by Barbara Goldberg and Gunna Dickson)

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