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PERRY, OK — A BNSF train carrying fertilizer derailed Thursday evening on January 13 at about 10:15 p.m. Only one of 4 derailed cars carrying the fertilizer was discovered to be leaking the hazardous material. The incident was reported by a police dispatcher.

Photo by Perry fire chief Wayne Emmons

The train was traveling about 20 mph along U.S. 77, also 7 Street at Birch Street in the middle of the city, at approximately 10:15 p.m when the train accident occurred, Perry police communication supervisor Richard Williams reported.

The train had 13 cars and in which four of the cars were hauling fertilizer, a hazardous material said Joe Faust, a BNSF Railway spokesman in Fort Worth, Texas.

Faust said three of the cars with fertilizer overturned but did not leak. One car with fertilizer that derailed stayed upright but started leaking. Firefighters evacuated homes in the immediate area.

Faust said an environmental team is on the scene and reports no waterways are affected by the spilled fertilizer.

He said none of the crew members were injured.

Perry Fire Chief Wayne Emmons said families from three homes were displaced but people can return to their homes since there is no threat in the area. He said fertilizer that spilled drained toward Cow Creek, but he is not sure if it got in the creek. Cow Creek does not feed any water sources for the city, he said.

A highway through the city will be closed all day due to a BNSF Railway train hauling fertilizer that derailed Thursday night and has closed off of a highway through the city, officials said.

Faust said two heavy equipment companies have been called to help clear the train cars. Crews hope to have the railroad crossing reopened by 7:30 p.m.

The cause of the derailment is not yet known.

“Because the fertilizer is a hazardous material an environmental team is on the scene. It is an active investigation,” Faust said.


Published by FELA lawyer Gordon, Elias & Seely, LLP

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