No one injured in morning train accident and explosion
There were no injures reported after an 18-wheeler hit the side of a train carrying liquid petroleum Tuesday morning in Milam County along FM 2095 causing a huge explosion.
In an update at 1 p.m. Milam County Sheriff Chris White said the MCSO was called to the scene at 6:44 a.m. this morning due to an 18-wheeler vs train accident.
“We got out here and there was lots of fire and smoke,” White said. “We started to evacuate residents and were here when the tanks started to pop. It was a pretty good mess, but luckily no one was injured or killed due to the help from our first responders.”
Cameron Fire Chief Henry Horelica said that when firefighters arrives there was a lot of smoke and the main threat was that something would explode.
“We started evacuating both sides of the tracks for about a ½-mile radius,” he said. “When the first explosion went off we pulled our personnel back and tried to just contain the fire. We got everyone out of the structures and houses and sent them to town.”
Horelica said they were able to go back in and retrieve some dogs out of some residences. No homes were lost. One barn burned down and the homes suffered heat damage.
Texas Department of Public Safety Press Officer Brian Washko said the DPS was on scene investigating.
“The preliminary report is that an 18-wheeler was westbound approaching a rail crossing,” he said. “Throughout the investigation it was revealed that the rail crossings were functioning and there was a car already stopped at it waiting for the train to pass through. For whatever reason the driver of the truck didn’t realize that the arms were down and the car was stopped and for whatever reason at the last minute he tried to avoid a collision with the car that was stopped and went around it and struck the side of one of the train cars and it deflected his vehicle away from the train. Fortunately everyone was able to escape before the explosion. The case is still open and active.”
Janelle Davis with BNSF railroad said that at least 10 train cars have been impacted by fire and derailment. She said they are working to make sure no waterways were affected. The train was a mixed freight train and five cars impacted were carrying gasoline.
The Cameron, Rosebud, Hearne and Milano Fire Departments were on the scene along with the Hazmat from Bryan Fire Department was also on hand.