- Associated Press
Monday, June 15, 2020

ROCK SPRINGS, Wyo. (AP) - A train operated by Union Pacific Railroad derailed in Wyoming, causing several rail cars to catch on fire and explode.

The company and first responders said smoke and flames shot about 100 feet (30 meters) into the air moments after the accident Saturday, The Casper Star-Tribune reported Monday.

The mixed freight train was hauling 116 rail cars of alcohol and other materials when it derailed 4 miles (6.4 kilometers) east of Rock Springs around 3 p.m.

“When we first arrived on the scene, we saw huge, thick black smoke,” Sweetwater County Fire District No. 1 Fire Chief Scott Kitchner said.

Emergency crews with more than 60 people extinguished the fire by 3:30 a.m. Sunday.

Kitchner said two deputies suffered second-degree burns during an explosion and were treated at Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County and then released, The Rocket-Miner reported.

About 30 rail cars derailed and 10 were involved in the fire, Kitchner said.

The black smoke was the result of plastics-type material burning on some of the cars, Kitchner said.

Several state and local agencies responded to the scene to assist, Kitchner said.

An accident investigation team from the U.S. Department of Transportation is investigating the accident, Kitchner said.

Copyright © 2020 The Washington Times, LLC.