Train derailment in Illinois forces evacuation of small town

Reuters News
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Posted: Oct 07, 2011 9:03 AM
Train derailment in Illinois forces evacuation of small town

(Reuters) - An entire north-central Illinois community was evacuated after a train carrying ethanol alcohol derailed overnight and caught fire, authorities said on Friday.

The roughly 800-person village of Tiskilwa, more than 100 miles southwest of Chicago, was evacuated after a 126-car train derailed around 2:20 a.m. local time, according to the Bureau County Sheriff's Office.

There was an explosion when the derailment happened, said Deputy Cindy Cromwell, a dispatcher in the sheriff's office.

No injuries or fatalities were reported, but a fire ignited after the derailment was still burning, she said.

It was unknown how many train cars derailed and how many caught fire, Cromwell said.

Residents were evacuated to Princeton High School, seven miles north of the small town.

The train was operated by Iowa Interstate Railroad, Cromwell said.

(Reporting by Lauren Keiper; Editing by Jerry Norton)