Wisconsin train derailment: All but 1 auto rack back on tracks

Repost from The Indian Republic

Wisconsin train derailment: All but 1 auto rack back on tracks

Divit Nehru | Wednesday, November 18, 2015
BNSF freight train
Wisconsin train derailment spilled thousands of gallons of ethanol

Twenty five cars derailed, including empty auto racks and tanker cars of denatured alcohol, more commonly known as ethanol. The company said four tank cars each released up to 500 gallons of ethanol, and a fifth vehicle released about 18,000 gallons.

The derailment resulted in 13 tanker cars being knocked off the tracks and spilling oil.

A 13-car Canadian Pacific train crashed on Sunday, resulting in one tank vehicle spilling Bakken crude oil near the Wisconsin town, according to the agency.

Three of the cars have been placed onto a temporary track, with nine more to go.

With the number of trains now traveling through Minnesota and Wisconsin, there are plenty of disaster officials who think it’s a major accident waiting to happen.

Fire Chief Paul Stephans said his department regularly trains to handle the side effects of derailments.

The Federal Railroad Administration is focusing on mechanical and track cause as the reason for derailment.

However, the Federal Railroad Administration and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration did agree with the tribes on one issue: the rule’s effective abandonment of a requirement that railroads hauling large quantities of crude oil notify state emergency officials.

Canadian Pacific tells WKOW that there was a train derailment in Wisconsin Wednesday around 1 p.m. Five freight cars went off of the track at a rail yard near Watertown. On Monday afternoon, new track was installed to replace the damaged track. Six BNSF Railway cars loaded with crude oil derailed in March near Galena, Ill., with two of the cars bursting into flames.

CP said in its statement that it had reserved hotel rooms for all affected families. The spill was contained and the oil did not reach any waterways, he said.

With the Wisconsin accidents, at least 26 oil trains and 11 ethanol trains have been involved in major fires, derailments or spills during the past decade in the USA and Canada, according to an Associated Press tally from data kept by transportation agencies and safety investigators. BNSF expects the tracks to return to service Monday morning.