Freight train carrying ACN derails in Belgium, leaks toxic fumes

06 May 2013 12:44  [Source: ICIS news]

Train carrying ACN derails near GhentLONDON (ICIS)--A freight train carrying acrylonitrile (ACN) derailed near Ghent in Belgium on Saturday, causing a series of explosions and chemical fumes to leak, according to an official statement and local media reports.

One person was killed following the incident near Schellebelle, to the east of Ghent, and 49 were injured after inhaling toxic fumes, the reports said.

Belgium’s train operator Infrabel said the driver of the SNCB Logistics train had activated an alarm signal at around 02:00 local time (01:00 GMT) on Saturday.

The accident led to 300 people being evacuated from their homes while emergency services dealt with the fire and contained the ACN. A further 200 were evacuated after a nearby river, wells and sewage systems were polluted, reports said.

Infrabel said that those evacuated were expected to be able to return home later on Monday.

The train had come from the Netherlands and was heading for Ghent's seaport. Six of the train's 13 wagons had derailed, according to reports.

By: Graeme Paterson
+44 20 8652 3214

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