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NTSB: Trains were moving 70 mph before Connecticut collision

Disasters and AccidentsRailway DisastersTransportation DisastersNational Transportation Safety BoardBridgeport (Fairfield, Connecticut)Dannel Malloy

About 30,000 commuters in Connecticut and New York braced for a sluggish trek to work on Monday -- and for the rest of the week -- as officials continued to investigate why two trains slammed into each other in Bridgeport, Conn., on Friday evening.

An eastbound Metro-North commuter train derailed and struck a westbound train, injuring at least 76 people. National Transportation Safety Board officials said Sunday the trains appeared to have been traveling 70 mph right before the collisions, which is in compliance with the speed limit in that area. 

One victim remained in critical condition Sunday, Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy said at a news conference.

Officials have removed the last cars from the tracks as New York City's Metropolitan Transit Authority and the Connecticut Department of Transportation warned travelers to make alternate plans.

"Tomorrow's commute will be extremely challenging," Malloy said. "Residents should plan for a week's worth of disruptions. If there's any way to stay home, stay home.... If you can stay in New York, stay over in New York."

Officials said the tracks at the crash site suffered tremendous damage and needed extensive testing and repairs.

NTSB member Earl Weener said at a separate Sunday news conference that investigators had sent two segments of track to the board's Washington offices for examination.

Investigators were also documenting train wheels and brake equipment as they were removed from the crash area.

NTSB investigators began interviewing crew members from both trains on Sunday and expected to remain on site for several more days, Weener said. He said it usually took about a year for the NTSB to issue a final crash report.

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