Oil Train Derails, Leaks Into Waterway

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Fires tied to derailment of train carrying crude oil through Ontario extinguished and traffic to resume through region. Photo: Daniel J. Graeber

GOGAMA, Ontario — A Canadian National Railway train carrying crude oil derailed near the northern Ontario community of Gogama, with multiple cars on fire and some oil leaking into a waterway, the company said yesterday.

There were no injuries reported from the derailment, Canadian National’s second in the region in just three days and third in less than a month.

The railway said a bridge over a waterway had been damaged and five tank cars had landed in the water, with some on fire.

“CN emergency responders are acquiring booms to contain crude-oil movements in the waterway,” CN spokesman Mark Hallman said in an email, adding that initial indications were that the waterway does not supply drinking water to Gogama.

CN said the crude oil on the train originated in Alberta and was destined for eastern Canada. It said the tank cars were the newer Casualty Prevention Circular 1232 model, which are widely regarded as better- protected against damage than older types.

Yesterday’s derailment came as firefighters in Illinois continued working yesterday to extinguish several blazes that erupted when a BNSF Railway train loaded with crude oil derailed on Thursday in a rural area of northwestern Illinois, a local official said.

Nobody was injured in Thursday’s fiery wreck, in which 21 cars of a 105-car train that had originated in North Dakota derailed on the mainline track about 3 miles outside Galena, a town of just over 3,000 near the Wisconsin border.

Five of the 103 cars filled with Bakken crude oil caught fire, city and company officials said.

By yesterday, several minor fires were still burning in the toppled cars, but crews expected to extinguish them by later in the day, said Galena City Administrator Mark Moran.