Minnesota train derailment prompts evacuation after ethanol-induced fire

Train Derailment Minnesota
This photo provided KSTP, emergency personnel respond to the scene of a train derailment early Thursday, March 30, 2023 in Raymond, Min. A train hauling ethanol and corn syrup derailed and caught fire and nearby residents were ordered to evacuate their homes, authorities said. (KSTP via AP) AP

Minnesota train derailment prompts evacuation after ethanol-induced fire

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A train carrying ethanol derailed in Raymond, Minnesota, early Thursday morning, prompting evacuations for homes in the area after the spillage caused several rail cars to ignite.

The Kandiyohi County Sheriff’s Office sent emergency personnel to the site of the derailment of a train from BNSF Railways and discovered several derailed tankers on fire that were carrying ethanol and a corn syrup liquid. Fire and law enforcement eventually called for an evacuation for homes within half a mile of the crash site, with officers and EMS employees assisting with the evacuation, per a press release.

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As of Thursday morning, the city of Raymond is not accessible to the public, so people hoping to distribute water and snacks to the firemen were instructed to go to the nearby town of Prinsburg at Unity Church, per the Raymond Fire Department.

“These brave souls have been working hard for hours already and have several hours of work ahead for them,” the department said.

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg tweeted Thursday morning that the Federal Railroad Administration is on the ground at the derailment site. It is unclear what caused the derailment at this time.

“At present no injuries or fatalities have been reported,” Buttigieg said. “We are tracking closely as more details emerge and will be involved in [the] investigation.”

https://twitter.com/SecretaryPete/status/1641395937074466816

This derailment involving dangerous chemicals follows the derailment in East Palestine, Ohio, two months ago that resulted in a days-long fire that released chemical toxins into the environment and killed thousands of fish. Several East Palestine residents have complained of side effects such as nausea, headaches, and rashes.

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Ethanol is a highly-flammable chemical that, if someone is exposed, can cause burning eyes, drowsiness, coughing, dizziness, and unconsciousness.

The Washington Examiner reached out to the Kandiyohi County Sheriff’s Office.

© 2023 Washington Examiner

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