Crew members recovering, cleanup underway after Two Harbors train derailment
The two crew members injured in Thursday's derailment of a Canadian National Railway train in Two Harbors remain hospitalized, according to Patrick Waldron, government and public affairs manager for CN in the U.S.
The crew members' conditions are unknown, but Waldron said neither is believed to have sustained life-threatening injuries. Two other crew members were on the train, but neither was hurt. Although the trains generally operate with just two crew members, Waldron said it's not unusual for there to be additional crew on board. Yesterday, he said, the surplus members were riding the train back to the yard.
Heavy equipment began rolling in last night, and work began to clear the tangle of heavy iron cars from the tracks. The goal for now is to ensure that trains can begin moving again, Waldron said, with the longer-term goal of removing all of the damaged cars from the site. Heavy equipment was brought in Thursday, and the initial cleanup was expected to continue through today. Few details are known, and the incident remains under investigation.
"A southbound train with 107 iron-ore cars derailed as it was coming into the yard," Waldron said. "Ninety-three cars were derailed -- 76 on the moving train and 17 loaded iron-ore cars that were parked in the yard. The 17 weren't part of the moving train, just parked on an adjacent track."
Waldron said it's too early to tell how long the jumble of cars will take to remove from the accident site. It's unclear how much cleanup will cost.
The Lake County News-Chronicle and the News Tribune are Forum Communications Co. newspapers.