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Freight Train Derails Near Libby

By Beacon Staff

LIBBY – A freight train has derailed after a rock slide slammed into its side in northwestern Montana.

BNSF spokesman Gus Melonas says there were no injuries in the derailment, which happened about 30 miles east of Libby on Wednesday.

Melonas says the rock slide struck the middle of the 88-car train, which was carrying pipes, soybean oil, corn syrup, frozen meat and various other merchandise to Pasco, Wash. Sixteen cars derailed, and some of them are completely buried by debris.

Melonas says all but one of the derailed cars were empty and there is no environmental threat. One of the cars was filled with frozen turkeys and was buried by the slide.

He says the line is expected to be closed for a day while crews remove the rest of the train and use excavators to dig out the derailed cars.