Fire follows train derailment


May 23, 2011 - 12:00 AM

MORAN — A 23-mile stretch of U.S. 59 was closed this morning after several boxcars connected to a Union Pacific train derailed, causing a massive fire that continued to burn throughout the day.
Some of the 15 cars that derailed from the 80-car train were filled with ethanol alcohol, according to the Allen County Sheriff’s Department. At least two of the cars were in flames, with several others threatened.
The derailment, about one-quarter mile south of Maryland Road just east of 59 Highway, or four miles south of Moran, occurred shortly after 4 a.m.
Deputies went door to door to  homes within 11⁄2 miles of the derailment to warn residents of the threat.
U.S. 59 was closed from Moran to the highway’s intersection with K-39 intersection east of Chanute.
In addition to volunteer firefighters, members of Iola Fire Departments Hazardous Materials Response Team were sent to the scene.
Crews  could do little more than watch as the massive fireball burned out of control. A plume of smoke was visible as far west as Iola.
There were no injuries. The cause of the derailment is under investigation.

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