Railroad tracks site of weekend derailment to reopen Monday

Railroad tracks site of weekend derailment to reopen Monday
(Source: Chief Dennis Ray of Lugoff Fire Department)
(Source: Chief Dennis Ray of Lugoff Fire Department)

LUGOFF, SC (WIS) - Railroad tracks that were the site of a train derailment this weekend in Lugoff will reopen Monday.

A bulldozer parked near railroad tracks in Lugoff is suspected to be the cause of the derailment Saturday morning

Kershaw County Special Operations and Columbia Hazmat worked to clean up the cars.

Around 1 a.m. Saturday, 12 of 16 train cars derailed off a CSX cargo train near Highway 601.

Officials say the cause of the derailment is believed to be a bulldozer that was parked in a manner where the blade of the vehicle was sitting on the railroad tracks. Investigators are working to determine if the bulldozer was parked there deliberately.

About 1,500 gallons of diesel fuel leaked from the derailed locomotive, but it was contained to the area.

Following the derailment, a plan was put into place to evacuate some of the residents in the Pepper Ridge subdivision off Main Street in Lugoff due to a possible chemical spill from two of the tankers on the train. Officials were able to determine that neither of the tankers leaked anything so that evacuation was not necessary.

"The two tankers that we were concerned about due to what they were carrying, we were able to assess that situation and determine that those tankers were not leaking," Lugoff Fire Battalion Chief Chris Spitzer said.

Three employees of a storage warehouse nearby were, in fact, evacuated after fire officials received reports that the warehouse building had been struck by two of the derailed cars. After determining the building structure was sound, the employees were able to return.  

CSX crews took over the scene, according to Lugoff Fire officials. They are working to clear the cars. Units from Jacksonville, Florida also have been called in to help.

In addition to the derailment, a vehicle also was somehow involved in the incident when the driver hit the nearby Kenco Storage Warehouse building. That person is okay.

Lugoff Fire Chief Dennis Ray says all roads are clear in that area.  There are no injuries and no threats to the public.

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