Train derailment cleanup continues in Jefferson - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Train derailment cleanup continues in Jefferson

(Source: KLTV) (Source: KLTV)
JEFFERSON, TX (KLTV) -

The clean-up and investigation continues, after a collision between two trains shut down a major highway in an East Texas city.

It happened at the railroad overpass on Highway 59 at East Watson Street in Jefferson just before 11 a.m. Friday. The focus now by railroad companies is how it happened. 

Still a shock to Jefferson residents, some now worry that the earthquake like shake from the derailment may have damaged their homes. 

"I need to start checking the foundation on my house and see what kind of damage from this shaking, this accident here," said homeowner Luis Renteria.
 
"It shook the area so bad, it felt like an earthquake. Come to find out there wasn't any hazardous materials so that was a good thing in the area because they was going to evacuate the area," said neighbor Steven Marshall.

Union Pacific says one of their trains came around a corner under the bridge and several Kansas City Southern train cars traveled down a crossing
track and collided with it.

"Causing 18 cars from the Union Pacific train to derail and several of them impacted and overhead vehicular bridge," says Union Pacific Corporate Spokeswoman Calli Hite.

Something that’s not supposed to happen.
 
"We're looking into what happened, what the cause specifically was," Hite says.
 
In an enormous effort, workers from TX-Dot and both railroads converged on the site, cleared the tracks away and began repairs. All within 12 hours.

Rail containers were jammed under the bridge compromising the structure, and crews feverishly worked to put a steel brace in to allow removal of the containers.
 
"We never want anything like this to happen but when it does we want to get it cleaned up and working as soon as possible," says Hite.

 And they hope the investigation will find answers.
 
"And what actions need to be taken in the future to prevent this from happening again," Hite says.

TX-Dot has opened up partial traffic now on the highway 59 bridge overpass. Work continues on repairs.

Related: 

Colliding trains damage Jefferson bridge, neighbors felt home shaking
Two trains collide and derail in Jefferson, Hwy 59 shut down
 

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