November 26, 2021

Train derails and spills coal into Mississippi River

MONTROSE (AP) — A train struck a barge in southeast Iowa late Saturday night, knocking several cars off the tracks and spilling coal into the Mississippi River.

BNSF railroad officials told the Burlington Hawk Eye that two coal cars landed in the river and three others were partially in the water after the collision near Montrose that also knocked over two locomotives. One other car that left the tracks remained upright.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources said several hundred gallons of diesel fuel also spilled out of the locomotives.

No injuries were reported, but the train’s crew was taken to an area hospital as a precaution, said Jason Dinwiddie, director of Lee County Emergency Management.

The railroad said it will work to remove any coal that ended up in the river.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources said it is working with local emergency responders and the Environmental Protection Agency to monitor the cleanup effort.