NEW YORK, December 31. /ITAR-TASS/. Authorities of US town of Casselton (North Dakota), near which two freight trains collided on Monday, recommend evacuating all its residents. The sheriff of Cass County, which comprises this town, made the relevant statement.
He recommended temporarily moving away to all people who live in the area of 8 km to the south and east from Casselton, the population of which, according to 2010 census data, exceeds 2,300 people. These recommendations are linked to weather forecasts, which allege that the smoke rising from the tank wagons with oil set on fire because of the collision, may be brought to the town. The authorities fear that the town’s residents may get poisoned by the toxic combustion gases.
The derailing occurred nearly in 2 km from Casselton. One of the train sets was carrying tank wagons with oil. Immediately after the incident, five explosions were heard and the fire began.
“The train carrying grain derailed, and a train set with crude oil collided with it,” Cecilia Fong, representative of the state’s emergency services, reported earlier. “Apparently, up to 12 cars are damaged.” She added that about 10 cars are on fire. The fire threatens several dozens of other cars. The situation is complicated by the fact that in several kilometers from the incident site an alcohol production plant is located.
According to preliminary data, no victims are reported.