Train Derailment Causes Evacuation and Road Closures in De Soto Parish
KEACHI, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – A train derailment in Keachi prompted residents to evacuate their homes Friday evening after more than 10,000 gallons of acid product.
Just before 11 p.m., a train derailed at the Highway 5 level crossing in Keachi, according to the DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Office Facebook page.
At 2 a.m., the Louisiana State Police Hazmat team declared a mandatory evacuation of homes within a mile and a half of the crossing.
Officials concluded a debriefing with the LSP Hazmat, Union Pacific and Hazardous Materials Contractions team at 6:30 a.m. Saturday. The preliminary inspection shows that 16 cars have derailed. Two of the 16 derailed tank wagons leaked acid-bound product.
Certain acids react with moisture or water, releasing vapors on the spot. Officials say aerial surveillance equipment is arriving on the scene to more accurately pinpoint affected areas. This helps to better define the continuous evacuation zones.
Officials say 10,000 liters of acetic anhydride and less than 1,000 liters of propionic acid spilled as a result of the derailment.
Work crews began clearing and many evacuees were moved to a hotel.
For those displaced, shelter is provided at the Stonewall Community Center.
The roads are blocked in the following places:
- Frank Burford @ Smyrna Road.
- Highway 789 is completely closed just south of the Williamson Generating Station.
Keatchi is now completely closed and the DPSO is asking residents not to drive in or through closed areas.
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