A CSX train derailed in Central Florida early Monday morning, spilling several thousand gallons of molten sulfur and cooking oil, but no injuries or environmental impacts have been reported, according to a spokesperson for the Class I railroad.
A CSX train carrying molten sulfur derailed in Central Florida early Monday morning, with no injuries reported, a spokesperson for the Jacksonville, Fla.-based Class I railroad has confirmed.
A total of nine rail cars were overturned, four of which were carrying molten sulfur, prompting emergency officials to tell nearby residents to stay indoors and to close their windows. Two rail cars did leak, spilling several thousand gallons of molten sulfur from one and several thousand gallons of cooking oil from the other, said CSX.
“After developing a remediation plan that was approved by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, specialists began removing the products from the ground earlier today, and they will continue working through the night until the site is fully restored,” a CSX spokesperson said.
Polk County Fire Rescue has no issued any evacuations and the “shelter in place” order was lifted later in the day on Monday. CSX is conducting environmental monitoring throughout the cleanup process, but has not yet detected any impact to the surrounding environment, nor do they anticipate any impacts from these products, the company said.
Several derailed cars have been moved to a staging area for later removal from the site while crews continue to clear the remaining derailed cars so track repairs can begin. Currently, Strickland Road is blocked by the derailment and the rail company is working to provide residents with an alternative access route.
The CSX train was travelling from Waycross, Ga., to Winston, Fla., and comprised three locomotives and 200 railcars – 120 loaded and 72 empty. In addition to molten sulfur, the rail cars were carrying cardboard, oats and rock. The cause of the derailment remains under investigation, with updates forthcoming, said CSX.