Two college students in Ellicott City, Maryland, were killed early Tuesday morning when a train carrying cars of coal derailed and struck the women dead. The two are thought to have been crushed underneath a huge pile of coal and rail car. The students, Elizabeth Nass and Rose Mayr, both 19-years-old, were reportedly spending their last night together before returning back to college. The longtime best friends decided to celebrate in a common gathering area for young adults, the town’s train bridge over the quaint town’s main street.
According to News 4, Google Maps showed areas on both sides of the tracks which give enough room for a train to pass over the bridge without hitting someone sitting off to the side. However, investigators still aren’t sure if the derailment occurred because the conductor was trying to avoid hitting the girls or if there was some other factor involved. The National Transportation Safety Board released a statement today saying that the emergency breaks were not applied until after the derailment occurred, suggesting a logistical problem with the tracks or train.
Nass and Mayr tweeted photos of their feet and the view of the town from atop the bridge just minutes before they were struck and killed. One tweet suggested that they were drinking.
Mayr attended the University of Delaware as a nursing student while Nass attended James Madison University.