Sunday, 8 March 2015

Fires still burning two days after Illinois oil-train derailment.

Fires were still burning two days after a train carrying Bakken crude oil was partially derailed near Galena, Illinois at about 1.20 pm local time on Thursday 5 March 2015. Twenty-one of the 105 cars being pulled by the train came off the rails, with several splitting open, leading to a series of fires and a danger of oil reaching the Galena and Mississippi rivers. A voluntary evacuation was carried out of properties within a mile of the derailment, due to the proximity of the incident to a standing propane tank,  though only two people are reported to have left their home.

Fires burning at the site of the 5 March 2015 Galena train derailment. Mike Burley/Telegraph Herald/AP.

Trains carrying crude oil have become an increasingly important part of the distribution system in North America as both production of and demand for oil has exceeded the capacity of the pipeline network. There have been a number of incidents involving derailments and oil spills, and concerns about the safety of the trains following an incident in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, when a 72 car oil train derailed and exploded, killing 47 people in July 2013. The oil cars in the Galena incident are reported to belong to a new improved class of tank, the 1232, with specifications that considerably exceed current minimum legal requirements, but this is the fourth incident within the space of a year in which these new cars have split, leading to claims that even these improved cars are not safe enough for the job.

See also...

Cleanup crews from the Colorado State Patrol and Environmental Protection Agency have been dealing with a 25 000 liter crude oil spill following a...

Firefighters are battling a major blaze after a train carrying crude oil was derailed by the James River in Lynchburg, Virginia, at about 2 pm local time on Wednesday 30 April 2014. The train was traveling from Chicago to Virginia when the incident occurred, with 12-14 oil cars from the 15 car train leaving the track and about four being breached. The oil was ignited...

The city of Casselton, North Dakota, has been evacuated after a train derailment led to a huge oil explosion on Monday 30 December 2013. The incident happened slightly after 2 pm local time (slightly after 8 pm GMT) about 8 km to the northwest of the city...


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