Congressman John Moolenaar unharmed in Virginia train crash


U.S. Rep. John Moolenaar, R-Midland, was unharmed aboard a train that collided with a garbage truck Jan. 31.

The crash occurred in Crozet, Virginia — outside of Charlottesville. 

U.S. Rep. John Moolenaar, R-Midland.

Members of Congress were traveling via train to a retreat in West Virginia when it collided with a garbage truck that was on the tracks. 

There was one confirmed death and one serious injury, according to a statement from the U.S. Department of Transportation. There were no serious injuries among members of Congress or their staff. 

"I was in the aisle when the accident occurred," Moolenaar stated after the accident. "There was a loud crash and I lost my footing but fortunately grabbed a chair to cushion my fall. Thankfully, I was not hurt. Then I learned we had hit a garbage truck that was on the tracks. I am so grateful for the work of the first-responders who came to the scene. My prayers today are for the injured and for the family of the person who died in today's accident."

The National Transportation Safety Board will be conducting an on-site investigation during the next few days and has not yet released any causes for the collision. 

Moolenaar represents Michigan’s 4th Congressional District that comprises Clare, Clinton, Gladwin, Gratiot, Isabella, Mecosta, Midland, Missaukee, Ogemaw, Osceola, Roscommon, Shiawassee and Wexford counties, as well as portions of Montcalm and Saginaw counties.