CSX Train Car Tanker Fire Near Chillicothe, Ohio

The Green Township Fire Department was dispatched to the scene for a reported tanker car on fire with hazmat materials at 3:11 am.


The Green Township Fire Department was dispatched to the scene for a reported tanker car on fire with hazmat materials at 3:11 am.

On arrival to the scene, the conductor produced the manifest for the train and the general location of the tanker car that was on fire. It was later determined that the tanker was loaded with 30,043 gallons of a Naphtha based petroleum product called Solvent 142.

The tanker to the North of this car had extensive amounts of flame impingement and was loaded with over 20,000 gallons of Hydraulic Oil.

The car to the South had no flame impingement but was loaded with over 30,000 gallons of Xylene. Due to the close proximity of the Xylene car, about 200 residents were evacuated and the local hospital which was approximately 1 mile from the scene of the fire was instructed to "shelter in place" by shutting down all air handlers and taking only those patients with life threatening conditions.

Cooling operations were implemented on the two attached cars and the Xylene car was uncoupled from the train and moved to a safe location by a second train engine brought in from the south side of the incident.

The hydraulic oil car was cooled with two master streams throughout most of the day Saturday until the fire died down enough to get to the coupler. Once this happened, the hydraulic oil car was uncoupled and pulled to the north about 200 yards by a large wrecker.

Due to the temperature of the product remaining in the tanker, offloading to another tanker was not possible.

An attempt to offload the product into a 30 cubic yard metal container for a controlled burn of the remaining product on Saturday night was stopped due to changing weather conditions and storms in the area.

The heavy air did not allow the smoke to readily disperse and thus the operations were ceased. When this was attempted, nitrogen was pumped into the top of the tank to control the superheated vapors which later proved to be helpful in cooling the product to below it