Tonnes of coal have been lost after a rail shipment of coal cars derailed on a US rail line through Pennsylvania.
10 rail cars of a Norfolk Southern freight derailed in Lycoming County and four of these cars flipped onto their side.
An investigation is underway in order to ascertain what caused the crash – details as to how much coal was lost, how fast the rail consignment was travelling, or why the coal cars derailed remain unclear.
The 10 were among 12 loaded coal cars that separated from the 129-car train that originated in Lock Haven, Norfolk spokesman David Pidgeon said, although he added that he could not explain why the coal cars derailed.
The derailment occurred about 2:45 p.m. in the Nisbet area, west of Williamsport. The single track is part of the main line between Harrisburg and Buffalo, N.Y.
The coal train was headed to PPL's Montour Power Plant near Washingtonville, according to Norfolk Southern.
Pirdgeon said that as yet, there is no timetable for reopening the track. He added that, for security reasons, he would not disclose how trains will be rerouted.
US railroads have been struggling to meet demand for cargo, following the harshest winter in over 10 years. Coal utilities have lost much of their previously high stockpiles of the fuel, and are putting increasing pressure on rail companies to bring in supplies.
The increased demand has in turn led to bottlenecks developing on rail lines, which are also trying to shift a record grain harvest and high demand across other commodities.
Written by Sam Dodson
Read the article online at: https://www.worldcoal.com/handling/21072014/norfolk-southern-coal-railcars-derail-1106/