Late morning accident spills corn cargo - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Late morning accident spills corn cargo

February 1, 2006

Albany -- Five cars of a freight train derailed in East Albany this morning. The derailment happened near an Industrial Park on Ware Street, which is off Cason Street.

The train cars were loaded with shelled corn, more than one million pounds of it. The corn is scattered and the tracks are still impassable because of the overturned cars.

Just after 11:00AM, Shane Harp heard a thundering noise. "Probably sounded like a bunch of shotguns going off," she said.

No shotguns, but grinding, twisting metal as these tracks gave way to tons of weight. Five container cars, each hauling 218,000 pounds of shelled corn, left the tracks.

"The first car just flipped and whenever that car flipped the others once just kept on going and they all started coming off the track." said Harp.

The conductor, a 33-year-old Bainbridge man, told emergency workers he heard the air line on the train burst. When he looked back, this is what he saw. "We called the ambulance and all that to try to get them on down here and we all ran over there to make sure nobody was in the car and we could see that nobody was."

No one was hurt, but the derailment left a huge mess that won't likely be cleaned up until Thursday. The shipment of corn was headed to Camilla when the train derailed.

Railroad workers don't yet know what caused the derailment, although emergency workers say it appears old, rotted cross ties gave way to the weight of the train.

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