The initial 911 calls after an Aug. 20 train derailment in downtown Ellicott City gave no indication that two teenagers had been buried in spilled coal.
Howard County Police on Friday released recordings of four 911 calls made just before midnight, after the CSX freight train derailed.
Two 19-year-old Ellicott City women, Elizabeth Nass and Rose Mayr, died in the derailment. Autopsies determined that the two were not struck by the train but were buried under coal that spilled from a derailed car. They were sitting on a railroad bridge over Main Street when the train derailed, investigators said.
In the 911 calls, none of the witnesses was aware of any injuries. Several callers reported that coal had been spilled.
“I'm in Ellicott City. The train fell over,” one man reported.
Since the derailment, police have increased patrols near the bridge to discourage trespassers, and a fence was installed at the top of the stairs leading to the elevated tracks.