Big UP derailment in California.

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Big UP derailment in California.

Unread post by BB »

Several Freight Cars Derail Near Whittier

POSTED: 11:22 am PDT October 16, 2004
UPDATED: 6:00 pm PDT October 16, 2004
WHITTIER, Calif. -- A freight train carrying hazardous materials derailed early Saturday, damaging at least four homes and forcing the evacuation of about 30 others, officials said. No serious injuries were reported.

Investigators were trying to identify the hazardous materials on board and determine whether any leaked when the 40 freight cars and trailers left the tracks, Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department deputy Luis Castro said.

SLIDESHOW: Train Derailment

The exact contents were not immediately known. The cargo considered hazardous included "things like paint and batteries," Union Pacific Railroad spokesman John Bromley said.

Castro said one person was treated at the scene for injuries caused by debris.

The Union Pacific train was en route from Los Angeles to Marion, Ark., when it derailed in the Los Angeles suburb of Whittier.

The freight cars included containers designed for train and ship travel, railroad spokesman Mark Davis said. One of the containers hit a house, damaging the home and the one next door, Davis said.

Two other homes were damaged by debris, Castro said.

In June 2003, 13 people were injured and several homes were damaged or destroyed when a Union Pacific train jumped the tracks in Commerce, Calif., about 10 miles from Whittier. Local leaders criticized the railroad's emergency procedures following the incident.

Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
UP Train Wreck on October 16, 2004

More bad UP publicity. :cry:
MQT Rail pictures at [url=]RRPictureArchives.NET[/url]

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Unread post by BNSF 1088 »

Residents still in shock from train derailment
NORTH WHITTIER, Calif. - Inalviz Gonzalez can't sleep, according to the Pasadena Star News.
For Gonzalez and 22 families who returned to their homes this week after being evacuated Saturday when a freight train derailed near their homes, it will be a while before life returns to normal.

"I've missed work because I've had nightmares and feel sick all the time. Sometimes I even start shaking, and I never used to shake," said Gonzalez, 24, on Thursday.

Gonzalez and her Croton Avenue neighbors also complain about constant noise coming from a clean-up crew removing wreckage and debris from the area beside the tracks, located between the homes and the San Gabriel River (605) Freeway.

"It's a lot of noise all day and night, and I am upset," said Reyes Carranza, his voice drowned out by the honking of a freight train passing by. "We are trying to go back to normal, but it is a confusing time. Nobody likes what happened."

The workers have been at the site all week loading up piles of sporting goods, computers, clothing and other items that spilled from cargo containers during the derailment. Rain, heavy at times, has hindered the operation, said Mark Davis, a spokesman for Union Pacific.

"Wednesday's weather gave us a setback, and right now it's very muddy, so we really don't know when we will be done,' he said.

Union Pacific also hasn't determined the cost of removing the debris and helping residents, he said.

The two families with the most severe damage to their homes are still housed in a South El Monte hotel. Thursday workers moved belongings from one of the homes into a moving van.

Union Pacific will continue helping those families as long as needed, said Davis.

The railroad and Whittier City School District also held a meeting with residents of the neighborhood on Thursday night at Mill Elementary School.

Wayne Horiuchi, a representative from Union Pacific Railroad, began the meeting by apologizing to about 50 residents from the neighborhood gathered in the school auditorium.

"We want to apologize,' he said. "It's the worst kind of thing that could happen to a community and we have asked you to attend for crisis counseling, but we'll provide information on claims at the end of the meeting.'

The two families who are still leaving in the hotel rooms attended the meeting. Family members said they are not considering legal action at this point but are still in a state of shock over what happened.

"I'm in a way angry, but I'm more sad. I miss my house and I am mostly here because I want some answers,' said Adriana Ocegueda. "Maybe talking to someone here will help me think a little clearer.'

Crisis counseling was provided to all the families in attendance by Pacific Clinic in Santa Fe Springs and the Intercommunity Child Guidance Center in Whittier.

Union Pacific reps said they would pay for counseling services down the road.

The train had just left a rail yard in East Los Angeles and was headed for Marion, Ark. at 57 mph in a 60 mph zone when it derailed.

A broken rail caused the derailment, said Davis.

A 6-foot rail segment with the defect was being sent to Washington, D.C. for further analysis by the National Transportation Safety Board.

(This item appeared in the Star News Oct. 22, 2004)

October 22, 2004
Director of Save Our Trains Michigan

BNSF Conductor Lafayette LA

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