Train derailment near Gainford, community evacuated
Sunday, October 20, 2013, 7:59 -
Firefighters have pulled back from the fire resulting from Saturday's CN tanker train derailment near Edmonton, Alberta, saying they will allow the fire to run its course.
"This fire needs to be extinguished by consuming the product," Parkland County fire chief Jim Phelan told the Canadian Press. "We're going to let it burn itself out."
As of 22:00 hours, the situation with the train derailment remains unchanged. The three tanker cars continue to... http://t.co/vAYR9se1GA— Parkland County (@Parkland_County) October 20, 2013
No one was reported hurt when the train derailed on Saturday near the village of Gainford, but 100 residents were evacuated. A local state of emergency has been declared.
Of the 13 rail cars involved, four were carrying crude oil and nine housed liquefied petroleum gas. They came off the tracks around 1 a.m. local time.
CN Rail says the train was inspected Friday evening before it was due to set out for Vancouver, and the tracks themselves were inspected on Thursday.
It could be as much as 72 hours before residents of the area could return home.
Parkland County officials said late Saturday night that area residents were still under a mandatory evacuation order, although the situation was unchanged.
"The three tanker cars continue to burn and the fourth continues to act as expected by venting and flaring the liquefied petroleum gas," the county's Facebook page read. "Emergency services continue to work the perimeter as there continues to be a threat of further explosion."
Listen: County resident Duane lives less than a kilometre from Gainford and says this to the disaster (via: MyTownToday.ca):
The incident comes just days after another derailment in northwestern Alberta forced 150 homes to evacuate as a precaution.
Officials took the precautionary measure on October 16, shortly after the derailment. Residents returned to their home by October 17.
With files from the Canadian Press.