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ROANOKE, VA – Three railroad workers were taken to Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital with injuries on Sunday, February 20, after sulfur spilled from a Norfolk Southern train near 24th Street and Shaffers Crossing.

Emergency crews respond to molten sulfur spill from a Norfolk Southern train in Roanoke, VA. Photo credit: Stephanie Klein-Davis / The Roanoke Times

The molten sulfur spill from the Norfolk Southern train caused Roanoke emergency crews to close portions of 24th Street Northwest near the Family Dollar store for about four hours Sunday, Fire Chief David Hoback said.

Location of molten sulfur spill from Norfolk Southern train at NW 24th Street and Shaffers Crossing in Roanoke, VA.

The spill occurred about noon after a valve malfunctioned in the container where the material was stored, he said. Crews evacuated businesses and blocked off streets within a half-mile, which was later reduced to a quarter-mile.

Roanoke and Salem fire and EMS crews responded to the spill and the area was evacuated for about four hours, while three railroad workers were taken to the hospital.

Two of the railroad employees were in critical condition when taken to the hospital, while one was taken as a precautionary measure, Hoback said. The two in critical condition suffered chemical burns and respiratory injuries while trying to contain the spill, he said.

Hoback said the spill started small and then expanded as workers tried to contain it.

Officials with Norfolk Southern and Roanoke Fire-EMS did not identify the victims Sunday.

Source: STEPHANIE KLEIN-DAVIS The Roanoke Times

Published by FELA lawyer Gordon, Elias & Seely, LLP

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