Chemical Spill Feared when Train Cars Derail in Ohio

One damaged tanker is carrying a component used in nail polish remover.


MORAINE, Ohio --

Moraine firefighters received calls about potential problems due to a couple train cars that derailed early Thursday morning.

They responded around midnight to railyards along Route 741 near Dorothy Lane, facilities that are managed by CSX and Norfolk and Southern railroads.

Fire officials said they discovered that some type of accident forced two train cars to derail or jump off the side track.

One of those cars fell over into a tanker car on a nearby set of tracks, damaging the outer shell of the tanker.

The tanker was carrying Acetone Cyano Hydrin, which is a component of Acetone, used in nail polish remover.

Fire officials became concerned because the Cyano Hydrin is marked as a hazardous material and an inhalation hazard.

Lt. Gary Rettig said, "It's marked that way because of the Cyano Hydrin, it's a derivative of cyanide. Basically, if it was released in big enough quantities it would be a concern."

Firefighters and railyard workers were able to do a close examination of the tanker and learned that the car's inner protective shell, or hull, was not damaged.

That meant there was no concern about hazardous leaks or fumes. Workers were then able to concentrate on clean-up efforts.

Railway supervisors called in a derailment contractor to upright the original two cars that jumped the tracks.

The tanker was also checked and even appeared to have a patch welded over the outside shell.

An investigation is underway to determine what caused the first two cargo cars to jump off the tracks.

Railyard activties returned to normal levels by 6 a.m. Thursday.

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