ONLY ON ABC7NEWS.COM: Doctor on derailed ACE train unable find first aid kit

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A doctor who was on an ACE Train that derailed near Sunol Monday night said she tried to help injured passengers, but was unable to find the first aid kit. She spoke exclusively with ABC7 News on Wednesday.

A doctor who was on an ACE Train that derailed near Sunol Monday night said she tried to help injured passengers, but was unable to find the first aid kit. She spoke exclusively with ABC7 News on Wednesday.

The doctor was among the passengers who returned to ACE Train service Wednesday, despite being on one of the derailed cars.

PHOTOS:9 injured in Ace Train derailment in Sunol


ACE officials said first aid kits are required on every car, but the doctor and other passengers said they couldn't find it.

Satya Ponugupati, M.D, was on the second car of the ACE Train as it and the car in front of it derailed on Niles Canyon Road. She said she and others sprung into action trying to help the injured.

WATCH VIDEO: ACE Train officials may use censors to detect debris on tracks

When asked if she tried to administer first aid, she said: "Actually I wanted to, but there was nothing on the train. We wanted to do something, but we could not reach the people there, we reached for a rope or something, we could not do anything," Ponugupati said.

"It's pretty overwhelming. It must have been scary for her because it's quite a drop. I didn't think it was that far down when we saw it on the news," ACE passenger Brian Grewal said.

RELATED: ACE train passengers recall terrifying derailment near Sunol

With its trains back in service, ACE is cooperating with federal and state investigators and they're looking at ways to try to head off a similar incident in the future. For instance, perhaps by installing front facing cameras and mudslide sensors. "I think it's a terrific idea, great technology. We just need to learn more about it, it's just something our agency is not aware of," ACE Train spokesperson Steve Walker said.

Sky7 HD was over the scene as Union Pacific put some sheeting over the bank in the accident area. Trains will continue to run at slower speeds through the area. "U.P. is safety first. If there's conditions out there that warrant the slow orders, yes there will be slow orders until they feel it's safe to operate at track speed," ACE operations manager Brian Schmidt said.

ACE reports ridership on its morning commute lines was down Wednesday morning by about 20 percent.
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