Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

September 19, 2013

2 injured in Virginia train derailment


Associated Press

COURTLAND, Va. — Two railroad employees were injured Thursday when a train carrying diesel fuel derailed and caught fire in Southampton County.

Media outlets report the derailment around 2:30 a.m. left two CSX locomotives on their side. One fuel tank was punctured, causing it to catch fire.

Southampton County Sheriff’s Office Maj. Gene Drewery said one of the two injured train employees was flown to a hospital because of a loss of consciousness and back pain. The other was taken to a different hospital. Their injuries are not considered life-threatening.

Crews worked throughout the morning to clean up the large fuel spill.

“They’ll be out there probably for days,” Drewery said.

CSX spokeswoman Carla Groleau said the two locomotives were pulling 35 cars with mixed freight when both locomotives and nine cars went off the tracks.

Each locomotive holds more than 8,500 gallons of fuel, Drewery said. The derailment happened in a wooded area with no homes nearby. No evacuations were necessary.

The train was near the Ashland chemical plant when it derailed, but there was no chemical spill, he said.

“We were lucky,” Drewery said.

The cause of the incident is under investigation.