Train Derails, Starts On Fire In Western Minnesota; Area Evacuated

Train Derailment

RAYMOND, Minn. (FOX 9) – More than a dozen rail cars on a BNSF train derailed near Raymond, Minnesota, early Thursday, with several derailed tankers starting on fire.

BNSF told FOX 9 approximately 22 rail cars derailed at 1:02 a.m. The Kandiyohi County Sheriff’s Office says the train was carrying ethanol and corn syrup liquid. Numerous rail cars were engulfed in flames, and crews were still working to put out the flames as of 8 a.m.

No injuries have been reported.

The area within a half-mile of the derailment has been evacuated to nearby Prinsburg, Minnesota. No travel is advised in the area.

Highway 23 is closed between Kandiyohi County Road 1 and Chippewa County Road 1 until 11:59 p.m. Friday, according to MnDOT.

“FRA is on the ground after a BNSF train carrying ethanol derailed early this morning, leading to an evacuation in the area of Raymond, MN. At present no injuries or fatalities have been reported. We are tracking closely as more details emerge and will be involved in investigation,” United States Department of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg tweeted.

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz and state emergency management leaders will go to Raymond to visit where the train derailed at 9:15 a.m. Thursday, a news release says. The governor, who was briefed by Buttigieg, will meet with residents.

The cause of the derailment is under investigation.

The Minnesota Senate will hold a rail safety hearing at 2 p.m. on Friday, March 31, to discuss a bill that would implement emergency response planning and establish training requirements aimed at improving rail safety.

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