Amtrak Station Situation Classified as Prank - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Amtrak Station Situation Classified as Prank

Picture from WAFB Viewer of Scene near Hammond Picture from WAFB Viewer of Scene near Hammond
Picture from WAFB Viewer of Scene near Hammond Picture from WAFB Viewer of Scene near Hammond
Picture from WAFB Viewer of Scene near Hammond Picture from WAFB Viewer of Scene near Hammond

HAMMOND, La. (WAFB) - A police SWAT team converged on an Amtrak station in Hammond Tuesday afternoon for what police later classified as a "prank." 

The train left the Hammond station at 4:30 p.m., heading for New Orleans.

An Amtrak spokesman confirms police responded to a potential emergency onboard The City of New Orleans train in Hammond.

Dozens of law enforcement officers converged on the scene and sealed off the area.

Workers at nearby businesses were ordered to stay inside.

Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari says police received a call indicating trouble on the train.

However, he says police responded and "no one was found in distress."

"This was investigated and nothing was found wrong," he said.

The train was held in Hammond for nearly 90 minutes, Magliari said.

Magiari says someone had called police, naming a person on the train was reportedly in distress.

However, he says police checked the train twice, and did not find anyone by that name.

"There is a situation on one of our trains there, but I don't know what that situation is," said Amtrak spokesman Cliff Black when reached as the incident first began Tuesday afternoon. 

Black says a manifest shows 55 passengers are onboard.

For the first time in her life, passenger Deborah Mathews geared up to ride a train.

"I'm scared to death," Mathews said.

Mathew's was teary-eyed because she dreaded hopping aboard one of these for weeks. So after someone reportedly decided to pull a prank, her nerves got even worse.

After evacuating the passengers and checking things out, deputies say they realized things were not adding up. Deputies concluded that this was all a foolish prank.

"We heard so many stories.....all a hoax," she said.

Mathews eventually got up enough nerve to board her train. Several businesses nearby were put on lockdown during the investigation.  There were no reported injuries and at last check and no arrests were made in the case.

 

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