Train Derailment: Plans to Address Hydrogen Fluoride Cars Delayed Until Sunday

Update 12 p.m.: Crews will not stabilize and level the hydrogen fluoride cars on Saturday, after all — meaning, barring any unforeseen problems, no shelter-in-place warning will be issued, said Jody Duncan, a MetroSafe spokeswoman.

Instead, the work and shelter-in-place warning will likely happen on Sunday, she said.

Crews found more debris than anticipated upon moving other cars near the hydrogen fluoride cars, Duncan said. For safety, authorities decided to clear up the debris before addressing the hydrogen fluoride cars, she said.

The evacuation warning for a 1.2 mile radius of the train derailment site is still in place, she said.

Update 11:35 a.m.: The planned work on the hydrogen fluoride cars is being delayed indefinitely, MetroSafe said. MetroSafe spokeswoman Jody Duncan said the work — which would require a shelter-in-place warning — was initially planned to begin at noon. MetroSafe said notices will be sent once the work and shelter-in-place warning begin.

Update 11 a.m.: Crews are expecting to begin work Saturday afternoon stabilizing and leveling two derailed train cars carrying the dangerous chemical hydrogen fluoride, which will require a shelter-in-place warning for a five-mile radius of the site at Dixie Highway and Katherine Station Road, MetroSafe said.

Friday night and Saturday morning, crews moved other cars to again access to the hydrogen fluoride cars, said Jody Duncan, a MetroSafe spokeswoman.

“They had some great progress last night,” Duncan said.

(Read Friday’s coverage of the train derailment here.)

The 1.2 mile evacuation order remains in place, Duncan said.

Once the shelter-in-place warning is implemented, MetroSafe will alert residents in the five-mile radius through the emergency telephone message system Code Red, Duncan said.

Residents should stay indoors, bring in pets, turn off their heating and air systems and keep doors and windows closed during that time period, Duncan said.

Friday night, MetroSafe executive director Doug Hamilton said authorities estimate that crews may need four hours to stabilize and level each of the hydrogen fluoride cars. That would add up to eight hours, though Hamilton said the work could go faster.

Joseph Lord

Joseph Lord is the online managing editor for WFPL.

@joseph_Lord

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