Official: Oil train likely went through NE Ind. before exploding

In this Monday, Feb. 16, 2015 photo provided by WCHS-TV, fire burns at the scene of a train derailment, near Mount Carbon, W.Va. Fires burned for nearly nine hours after the train carrying more than 100 tankers of crude oil derailed in a snowstorm, plunging at least one tanker into a river while sending a fireball into the sky, authorities and residents say. (AP Photo/WCHS-TV, Bob Aaron)


FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – We’re learning new information about Monday’s oil train explosion in West Virginia.  Noble County officials believe that same train passed through Northeast Indiana while on its way to the east coast.  We first showed you the dangers associated with crude oil rail in a 15 Finds Out Investigation: Through Your Backyard.

“When I look at things like this I look at is there a lesson to learn,” Noble County EMA Director Michael Newton said.

15 train cars carrying crude oil sent a huge fire ball into the sky Monday in West Virginia.  About 1,000 people had to leave their homes.  Thankfully no one was hurt.

“What I’m seeing is they responded in a pretty standard way. They got the people out of the way and there’s not much in a large scale burn like that you can do but get the people back and let it burn out.”

Now, you may remember in our 15 Finds Out Report – Through Your Backyard – we uncovered every week CSX has anywhere from 20 to 35 trains that carry one million gallons or more of oil through part of Northeast Indiana.  Noble County EMA Director, Michael Newton, believes that same train that derailed traveled through Kosciusko, Noble, and DeKalb Counties first.

CSX crude oil weekly shipments

That’s why Newton says families need to have a plan in place in case something happens here.

“Shutting down the furnace and the air conditioner so it doesn’t come inside. Do you have a go kit with say the medicine you need that you could run out grab and run out the door, maybe be out of your home for several days.  We have wonderful responders here in our county and I’m sure everywhere else, but you have got to take care of yourself until we can get to you.”

The U.S. Transportation Department is asking for tougher safety regulations.

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