CIMARRON, Kan. (CBS) — An Amtrak train headed to Chicago derailed in Kansas overnight, sending nearly 30 people to the hospital.

The Southwest Chief train from Los Angeles to Chicago was carrying 131 passengers and 14 crew when several cars left the tracks about 20 miles west of Dodge City, Kansas, just after midnight.

READ MORE: LOCATED: Stacey Ammons, 31, Reported Missing From Morris

Passengers said the train was traveling at a high rate of speed when seven cars derailed, and five ended up on their sides.

According to the Associated Press, a U.S. government official who was briefed on the investigation said an engineer on the train noticed a significant bend in a rail, and hit the emergency brakes before the train derailed. The train appeared to be going about 75 mph at the time.

One person who was on the train said passengers knew something was wrong pretty quickly, and panic set in fast.

“I was still pretty awake, so I was reading my book on my Kindle, and just kind of laid back, when all of a sudden it got a little bit sort of turbulent, I suppose you would say, and it became more drastic, and after about three seconds, you knew something was wrong,” Daniel Szczerba said.

Szczerba took photos and videos of the aftermath. He said he saw several passengers on both sides of the train, trying to find friends and family members.

Hollie Reynolds, of Dyer, Indiana, said she was shocked, but not injured, when the car she was in tipped over.

“The whole right side – if I’m facing north – of the train was just totally on the ground, like, busted. There’s rocks coming through the doors and the windows,” she said.

Reynolds said people had to climb on luggage to get to an emergency exit window so rescue teams could help them get out.

Amtrak said 32 passengers were taken to hospitals. Two of them were in critical condition. All but three of the injured passengers were released from the hospital later Monday morning.

The uninjured passengers were taken to a community center in nearby Cimarron, Kansas. Amtrak was making alternative travel arrangements for the passengers.

MORE NEWS: 14-Year-Old Charged In West Garfield Park Carjacking

The National Transportation Safety Board sent a team to Kansas to begin an investigation.