A train derailment in Hoxie, Arkansas has killed two people and sent two others to the hospital with unspecified injuries. Authorities believe that the four affected individuals were all crew members working aboard two Union Pacific locomotives when they collided near Hwy. 67 in Lawrence County on Monday. Both trains were carrying toxic chemicals. The train derailment and collision resulted in flames erupting from one of the engines, reported Arkansas Times.
According to Arkansas State Police, nearby roads had to be closed after the early morning train derailment, and a large number of homes needed to be evacuated. Displaced residents were sent to the Walnut Ridge Community Center.
The train crash was reported to state police at 3 a.m. One of the train engines was still in flames at sunrise. Fortunately, authorities said the toxic chemical cargo was safe from the flames. Union Pacific spokesman Brandon Morris said that the two freight cars that caught fire after the train derailment were carrying diesel fuel and an alcoholic beverage respectively. The flames were extinguished by 10 a.m. Monday.
Arkansas State Police released a statement assuring locals that most roads impacted by the train derailment have since reopened. Police outlined the few exceptions and offered an alternate route to affected travelers.
“All roadblocks in and around Hoxie have been removed with the exception of Highway 67 south of Highway 63 and Highway 67 at the intersection with Highway 230. Roadblocks at these two locations will remain active for up to three days while railroad crews remove wreckage.
Highway 91 remains open as an alternate route for motorists traveling to Walnut Ridge and the Hoxie area.
Most of the evacuees removed from their homes earlier today have been allowed to return.”
As previously reported by The Inquisitr, another recent mishap at a train station had a much happier ending. A toddler in a baby stroller fell onto train tracks in London, England earlier this month and narrowly avoided almost certain death when his brave mother dove onto the tracks to save him. The unidentified woman lifted her child and the stroller to safety just seconds before a train pulled into the station. Officials were unable to identify the family involved in the incident.
Chief Inspector Mark Lawrie released a statement on August 11, 2014, urging the importance of locating the mother and child involved in the toddler on the tracks incident to ensure assure their health and safety following the harrowing episode.
“This was a frightening incident, not just for the scale of the danger the child was exposed to, but also because the woman then put her own life on the line by going onto the tracks. We urgently need to identify the people involved to ensure the child wasn’t injured as a result of the fall onto the tracks.”
Authorities have not released the names of the two people who were injured and the two people who were killed in the trail derailment.
[Image via Arkansas Times]