Amtrak could pay $200 million to crash victims - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Amtrak could pay $200 million to crash victims

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By EILEEN SULLIVAN
Associated Press
  
WASHINGTON (AP) -- For the first time, Amtrak could face a $200 million payout to crash victims.
  
That's the limit set by Congress.
  
But that may be too low to cover the costs of the eight lives lost and more than 200 people injured in last week's derailment in Philadelphia.
  
That cap for a single passenger rail incident was part of a late effort in 1997 to pass a law that would rescue Amtrak from financial ruin and help it one day become independent.
  
If the limit were adjusted for inflation -- which it isn't -- the cap would be just under $300 million now.
  
An Associated Press review finds the Philadelphia crash could be the first time the liability ceiling -- designed specifically for Amtrak -- would actually apply to the railroad.

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