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Fayette Derailment Update_2015_02-17

From the Office of the Secretary
West Virginia Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety
Joe Thornton, Cabinet Secretary

Contact: Lawrence Messina
(304) 558-2930

Feb. 17, 2015

W.Va. officials provide update on response to Fayette County train derailment

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- State of West Virginia officials remain on-scene with first responders, local and federal officials and CSX representatives following Monday’s derailment of a CSX train hauling crude oil near Mount Carbon in Fayette County, W.Va.

This morning, CSX confirmed 26 tanker cars derailed during the incident. Nineteen of those tankers were involved in the fire. At this time, a limited number of small fires continue to burn off.
Initial reports indicated a tanker car reached the river; however on-site officials have confirmed no tankers reached the water.

CSX representatives are working with local, state and federal officials to remove unaffected cars from the scene and to deploy environmental protective and monitoring measures in the affected area, in the Kanawha River as well as a creek near the company’s tracks.

Results from two rounds of testing from water samples collected by the West Virginia National Guard’s 35th Civil Support Team show no crude oil near the Montgomery water system intake. Results from an additional round of testing confirmed no crude oil was present at the intake. West Virginia American Water is in the process of restarting the Montgomery plant and will be issuing a boil advisory.

The U.S. Coast Guard and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency remain at the site to assist with the response. The West Virginia Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, the West Virginia National Guard, the Department of Environmental Protection and the Department of Health and Human Resources are helping to coordinate the overall response and field requests for resources and assistance.

At this time, officials believe fewer than 800 people have been affected by power outages related to lines damaged by the initial fire. Officials estimate that between 100 and 125 area residents have been displaced from their homes temporarily as a result of this incident. State officials continue to work with Appalachian Electric Power to assess any long-term infrastructure needs and restore power as quickly as possible.

CSX has opened a community outreach center to address community needs as a result of the train derailment. The outreach center is open from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. until further notice at the Glass-in Riverside Room at the Glen Ferris Inn on U.S. Route 60 in Glen Ferris. Local residents can call 877-835-5279 for more information or assistance.