2 Freight Trains Collide Near Panhandle, Texas
Two trains collided in Panhandle, Texas, on Tuesday morning, sparking an explosion and fire, according to officials and witnesses.
One person was transported to nearby Amarillo for medical care. “We have no information on other injuries or casualties at this time,” the office said.
Rescue efforts are underway at the scene for three other railroad employees involved in the crash, local first responders told Newschannel 10.
Emergency crews are still attempting to put out the fire amid “dangerous conditions for our emergency responders,” the sheriff’s statement read. “We have all the manpower we need and ask that you stay away from this area for your health and for the safety of our emergency responders.”
The Texas Department of Transportation said Highway 60 in Panhandle has been closed due to the derailment and fire. It’s unclear when it will reopen.
The Carson County Sheriff’s Office said that residents east of road SH 207 are being evacuated due to shifting winds around the fiery wreckage. “All persons north of that area should shelter in place,” it said.
At least one of the trains involved BNSF, one of the largest railway companies in the United States.
The Carson County Emergency Operations Center was activated, and officials from Carson County, TCEQ, the Texas Health Department, Texas Highway Patrol, BNSF, and other agencies are helping in the response.
It’s unclear if there were any deaths or injuries.
— Clint Walker (@hchdwalker) June 28, 2016
Photos uploaded to Twitter show the wreckage of the trains on the edge of Panhandle, Carson County.
The images show carriages on top of one another with a large fire sending a black cloud of smoke into the air.
— BNO News (@BNONews) June 28, 2016
— FOX 12 Oregon KPTV (@fox12oregon) June 28, 2016
KCBD-TV reported that the trains collided head-on. Carson County officials are asking motorists to avoid the area. Both trains were identified as belonging to BNSF, one of the largest freight train operators in North America and a subsidiary of Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc.
It’s unclear what caused the trains to crash or what the trains were carrying.
The trains collided near Highway 60—just 5 miles east of Panhandle.
Newschannel 10 reported that Amarillo hospitals are operating under high alert in the event there are injuries.