Alabama Residents Back in Homes After Train Leaves Tracks

September 26, 2007

A train derailment in Flomaton, Ala., over the weekend caused some anxiety and evacuations after authorities learned that the 66-car train was carrying anhydrous ammonia.

The derailment that occurred after 9 p.m. on Sept. 22 when 11 of the cars left the tracks just west of the downtown district, did not result in any leaking of the chemical, authorities said.

Ten residents were evacuated and not allowed to return to their homes until shortly before 9 p.m. Sunday. U.S. 31 also was reopened late Sunday.

Escambia County Sheriff Grover Smith said there was no leaking of the clear, colorless liquid that’s used to make fertilizer.

CSX Transportation spokesman Gary Sease said the “merchandise train,” carrying various materials, was headed from Mobile, Ala., to Jacksonville, Fla. He said a small amount of toll oil, or liquid rosin, that had leaked was cleaned up without causing damage.

No one was injured and authorities are trying to determine what caused the derailment. Sease said an investigation could take several days.

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