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Victims improve as union says operator blacked out

Victims improve as union says operator blacked out

The four most seriously injured victims in a weekend light-rail crash were improving Monday, as a union official said the operator of the train had blacked out just before the collision with a parked train.
Two of the victims were in good condition, one was fair and the fourth had been transferred to another hospital for non-medical reasons, said Rachael Kagan, spokeswoman for San Francisco General Hospital.
A total of 47 people were injured in the crash, including the driver.
Meanwhile, Irwin Lum, president of San Francisco's transit workers union, told The Associated Press a "medical condition" was to blame for the driver's loss of consciousness.
Federal investigators reported Sunday the driver, who has not been named, had turned off the train's automatic controls moments before the collision.
Lum said drivers under pressure to keep their trains running on time turn off the controls before entering the West Portal station to speed loading and unloading.
Investigators had not yet interviewed the operator and typically wait until a crash victim's health has improved before conducting interviews. The driver had not been involved in any major accidents prior to Saturday, Lum said.
A drug test was administered, which is standard procedure for crashes.
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Associated Press Writer Jason Dearen contributed to this report.


Updated : 2021-10-21 00:01 GMT+08:00