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Evacuation ordered after CSX train derails in western Pennsylvania

By
Ed Adamczyk

Aug. 3 (UPI) -- Fire crews from several states are looking Thursday into the derailment of 32 rail cars -- some carrying hazardous material -- in western Pennsylvania.

Preliminary reports said the railroad cars left the tracks in Bedford County, near Hyndman, at around 5 a.m. Three cars burned, as well as residential garage struck by a rail car.

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Officials said at least one car contained liquefied petroleum gas, and others contained flammable liquid asphalt. One, which was confirmed to have leaked and caught fire, contained molten sulphur.

The derailment forced the evacuation of residents within a one-mile radius of the derailment, which occurred about 85 miles southeast of Pittsburgh. A local elementary school was also evacuated, but no serious injuries have been reported.

All roads leading into Hyndman were closed, and some flight restrictions have been put in place.

Train owner CSX Corp. said in a statement that its hazardous materials specialists were dispatched to the scene, and that it's opened a community outreach center near the derailment site. The Hyndman Fire Department opened a similar center nearby.

CSX said the 178-car train was traveling from Chicago to Selkirk, N.Y., near Albany, when the derailment happened. Its load includes construction material, wood pulp, paper and the hazardous material which caught fire.

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The National Transportation Safety Board is expected to investigate the derailment.

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