Union Pacific railroad has a reported a train derailment

Union Pacific railroad has a reported a train derailment today near Hampton involving 44 railcars. No injuries were reported.

According to Robynn Tysver Union Pacific spokesperson, the 44 car train carrying mixed commodities and tank cars of asphalt was going south over Otter Creek at appx. 3:30am September 5th when it derailed, spilling asphalt into the water below and pilling up the cars like jackstraws.

Union Pacific employees and contractors rushed to the site and erected a boom in the creek to quickly contain the spill. Hazmat and cleanup crews are currently on site working to remove the chemicals and wreckage, but the process could take "several weeks" according to Tysver.

The cause of the crash is "under investigation" and further details are being withheld at this time however. The public and the press are being restricted from the area for safety reason as massive amounts of equipment and personnel scramble to remove the derailed cars and spilled chemicals.

At this time Union Pacific is unsure how it will route around the derailment Tysver remarked, but logistics were "underway." The line is a wide gauge line with a standard measurement between the inside rail track of 56.5 inches.

While the cause is currently not known, on its website under the page Preventing Derailments Union Pacific notes that "Gauge width beyond (standard), known as wide gauge, may lead to train derailments. Wide gauge can be caused by lateral rail car movement on tracks and weak rail ties." Further details and will be provided as they are released and when access is allowed to the site. Photo courtesy of Union Pacific Railroad.


Hampton Chronicle

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Hampton, IA 50441
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