No injuries in trail derailment
Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 9, 2000
Shirley Kittleson heard a huge crash and got the surprise of her life yesterday when a train ran into several rail cars sitting on the tracks next to Grain Millers of St.
Thursday, November 09, 2000
Shirley Kittleson heard a huge crash and got the surprise of her life yesterday when a train ran into several rail cars sitting on the tracks next to Grain Millers of St. Ansgar Wednesday shortly after 12 p.m.
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The administrative manager said the Canadian National/Illinois Central train was en route from Glenwood, Minn. to Waterloo, Iowa, with plans to go straight through St. Ansgar. However, Kittleson explained, the switch line on the railroad tracks hadn’t been switched so the train came in on Grain Millers switch line instead of going on through town on the main line. Grain Millers is located along Highway 218 on the north edge of St. Ansgar.
Kittleson said Grain Millers, a specialty food ingredient supplier that both brings in and sends out rail cars of grain, had five or six cars full of grain sitting on the line. The errant train "charged into the first car, creating a domino effect," Kittleson said.
Several cars were derailed, spilling grain and diesel fuel in the area and blocking the drive into Grain Millers for several hours. There were no injuries. The engineer driving the train was the only railroad personnel on board, and he was also uninjured. Grain Millers also lost a John Deere tractor that was parked on the tracks and completely demolished by the train.
"We were very very lucky there was no one out there," Kittleson said.
Kittleson said she called in the fire department, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and railroad officials. The accident is still under investigation.