A cargo train derailed Tuesday in a Baltimore suburb after colliding with a tractor-trailer, resulting in a huge explosion that shook buildings and shut down a nearby highway.
Authorities said the train struck the tractor-trailer around 2 pm, flipping several cars off the tracks. The severity and extent of injuries related to the accident were not immediately clear, though officials said the derailment took place in a sparsely populated industrial area. The two passengers aboard the train were reportedly uninjured, and the truck driver was said to be in serious but stable condition.
Baltimore police urged anyone in the area to consider evacuating as a precaution.
Warehouses and businesses in the area of Rt 40 -- if you can see the smoke plume, emergency mgmt advises you to evacuate.— BACO Public Safety (@BACOPoliceFire) May 28, 2013
The warning came as amateur videos appearing to show the huge explosion and resulting inferno began to trickle out (WARNING: Video contains some coarse language):
Twitter users have posted incredible images of the wrecked train engulfed in flames.
PHOTO: Fire burning after freight train derailment in Baltimore County, MD twitter.com/nbcnightlynews…— NBC Nightly News (@nbcnightlynews) May 28, 2013
Screen shot of train derailment as seen from WBAL chopper. Note the damage to the building on the right. twitter.com/acarvin/status…— Andy Carvin (@acarvin) May 28, 2013
Baltimore's fire chief said 15 cars had jumped the tracks. He added that emergency responders were containing the blaze and letting the fire burn itself out until they can determine what the train was carrying.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- How Ronald Reagan turned America into a nation of children
- Why Mitt Romney is perfectly poised for a comeback in 2016
- The crusade against Iraq War supporters has forgotten someone: Hillary Clinton
- The Nazi smart bomb that inspired China's most dangerous weapon
- Why is the West so afraid of Islam?
- Here's the schedule very successful people follow every day
- 8 things the world's most extraordinary survivors can teach you about resilience
- Why scientists can't kill HIV
- How to make classic pulled pork
- This week I learned the moon might be littered with dinosaur fossils, and more
Subscribe to the Week