Genesee County assists with train derailment in Attica
Alexander volunteer firefighters along with the hazmat team for Genesee County Emergency Services and with the county's emergency management coordinators responded to a train derailment in the Town of Attica today.
The accident was in the area of Route 238 and reported at 4:05 p.m.
Emergency Management Coordinator Tim Yaeger said the accident was in a pretty inaccessible location in Wyoming County and because of that, an engine fire was being allowed to burn itself out. There was no hazmat concern other than the diesel fuel of the engine. The hazmat team set up booms to contain any potential fuel.
As a precaution, the City of Batavia was contacted to temporarily close the water intake from the Tonawanda Creek.
Eleven cars derailed along with two engines from the Norfolk Southern line.
Two crew members self-extricated and were transported to an area hospital. They suffered non-life-threatening injuries, Yaeger said.
Town of Batavia fire responded to Alexander's hall as a fill-in.
UPDATE 8:14 p.m. (By Billie): All Genesee County responders are clearing the scene. Federal, state and local officials involved at the scene will remain for now. Heavy equipment will be forthcoming to remove some train cars so that Route 238 and Main Road in Attica can be reopened. Train crossing sites should be reopened by 10 o'clock tonight. The diesel fuel is allowed to continue to burn.
UPDATE: Press release from the Wyoming County Sheriff's Office:
On Feb. 15, at 4:03 p.m. hours, the Communications Division at the Wyoming County Sheriff’s Office received a 9-1-1 call of a train derailment near the East Main Road intersection in the Town of Attica.
The Attica Fire Department responded to the scene. Attica Fire Chief Jay Myers reports, “two engines and approximately 10 railroad cars derailed of the Norfolk Southern Railroad. The railroad cars were carrying new cars as cargo.”
Chief Myers also stated there were two railroad personnel on the engine who were injured. They were taken to Erie County Medical Center.
“The lead engine is on fire and in coordination with the Norfolk Southern, the engine will remain burning, primarily due to the difficult location of the derailment,” Myers said.
Wyoming County Emergency Services Director Anthony Santoro is on scene, coordinating efforts from the federal, state, local and railroad resources.
Wyoming County Sheriff Gregory Rudolph says “an initial investigation was conducted and we are turning over our investigation to the Norfolk South Railroad Police and the Federal Railroad Administration and a cause has not yet been determined.”
Director Santoro says, “the mutual-aid resources that responded and assisted were the: Alexander Fire Department, Varysburg Fire Department, Bennington Fire Department, Wyoming County Emergency Services and Hazmat Team, Genesee County Emergency Services and Hazmat Team, the New York State Police, the Attica Fire Department and Wyoming Correctional Facility.”
Norfolk Southern personnel are on scene and making efforts to clear the Route 238 and East Main Road intersections with an estimated time of 10 p.m. The long-term cleanup of the damaged engines and railcars will be days.
Photos: Reader submitted photos.