Thursday, August 17, 2017

Derailment Cleanup to Continue into September

Central School students will have one more day off before returning to school on Monday. The school will be closed on Friday as Union Pacific Railroad cleans up a derailment close to the school.

In a letter addressed to local officials, Brandon D. Morris, a Union Pacific public affairs director, said the railway is open, but crews are still working to empty the derailed cars and move them.

Morris wrote, “The railroad mainline is currently operational and the road crossing at Central Road…will be accessible to the public once the county removes the Road Closed sign (on Friday). Over the next few weeks Union Pacific will continue to remove the commodities from the derailed cars before dismantling and removing the tank and hopper cars. The propylene (propane) is tentatively scheduled for transloading via truck from the six remaining tank cars beginning the week of August 28 during the hours of 6 p.m. - 6 a.m. Weather permitting, the process is exceed to take up to 10 days to complete.”

Charles House, chief deputy with the Sequoyah County Sheriff’s Office, said the road will be open but law enforcement is discouraging travel to the derailment site so that the cleanup can continue unimpeded.

Morris continued, “The rail cars will remain secured in place on private property until they are emptied, cleaned and removed at the end of the month and into early September. Air monitoring operations will be conducted on site and in surrounding areas during the propylene transloading process.”

House said the sheriff’s office is providing security for the cleanup.

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

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