Train derailment causes leak, prompts evacuations

Crews continued efforts Thursday to neutralize hydrochloric acid that spilled during a train derailment in southern Louisiana, prompting evacuations and road closures, officials said.

Officials in Paulina in St. James Parish, about 50 miles west of New Orleans, said about 200 homes in a quarter-mile area were evacuated after the leak Wednesday as law enforcement and emergency officials went door-to-door alerting residents. The leak was caused by the derailment of six train cars, they said.

Residents were put up in hotels or offered shelter at a senior center, according to the St. James Parish Sheriff’s Office. Those hotel stays were extended Thursday for another night as authorities tested air quality and ground contamination at individual residences near the site, St. James Sheriff Willy J. Martin Jr. said at a Thursday afternoon news conference.

“Every single residence is going to be tested,” he said.

It is unclear when residents will be able to return to their homes,  Martin said Thursday morning. He said authorities see no need to expand the evacuation zone as crews neutralize ground contamination.

Source link