Jump to content

Attention: In order to reply to messages, create topics, have access to other features of the community you must sign up for an account.
Sign in to follow this  

Train Blast Kills at Least One and Forces Evacuations in Canada

Recommended Posts


Train Blast Kills at Least One and Forces Evacuations in Canada
A runaway train carrying petroleum exploded early Saturday in Lac-Mégantic, a lakeside town of about 6,000 people in Quebec.


OTTAWA — A runaway train exploded Saturday, killing at least one person and forcing more than 1,000 people to evacuate from a town in the province of Quebec, the police said. The 73-car train, which included tank cars carrying petroleum, destroyed much of downtown Lac Mégantic, a town of about 6,000, in a blaze that continued through the day.
The evacuees ran from their homes in the early hours of Saturday as towering fireballs filled the sky over the town, which is in a popular tourism region about 150 miles east of Montreal.
Bernard Demers, who owns a restaurant near the site of the explosion, told The Canadian Press news agency that the blast was “like an atomic bomb,” adding that the heat from the fire was very noticeable as he fled.
Lt. Michel Brunet of the Sûreté du Québec, Quebec’s provincial police, told reporters in the afternoon that the force had received several reports of missing people. But at an earlier news conference he said that it was unclear whether they were simply out of town at the time of the explosion, about 1 a.m.
Some residents told reporters that a bar in the blast zone was usually busy around that time. Officials said that the explosion involved four tank cars on the train and engulfed about 30 buildings.
The police said that it was too early to determine the cause of the explosion. Joseph R. McGonigle, a spokesman for the Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway told The Gazette, a Montreal newspaper, that before the explosion, an engineer had parked the train near the town for the night, secured its brakes and checked into a hotel in Lac Mégantic. He said that it appeared that the freight cars became detached from the train’s locomotives and rolled into the town before derailing and exploding.
“There are many fail-safe modes,” Mr. McGonigle told the newspaper. “How this happened is just beyond us.”
Quebec’s Environment Ministry said in a statement that the rail cars were carrying crude oil.
There were unconfirmed reports that oil from the train had spread into nearby waterways.




Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.