Rail Line Near Libby Still Closed After Derailment

By Beacon Staff

Rail workers are having difficulty clearing hundreds of feet of track after a rock slide caused a freight train to derail in northwestern Montana.

BNSF Railway Co. spokesman Gus Melonas said Thursday that as soon as workers remove some of the debris, more rock slides down the mountain.

A rock slide on Wednesday struck the 88-car train, which was carrying soybean oil, corn syrup, frozen meat and other merchandise to Pasco, Wash. Sixteen cars derailed, and some were buried by debris.

Melonas says about 400 feet of track will have to be replaced. Workers are expected to work through the night Thursday clearing debris and fixing the track.

He says between 30 and 35 trains a day use that stretch of track, and they have been rerouted south.

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