Monday, July 08, 2013
Thirteen Dead- Dozens Still Missing after Canadian Railroad Disaster
An unoccupied- runaway train carrying many tanker cars of petroleum product derailed and exploded in the south Quebec Canada town of Lac Megantic early last Saturday.
Lac Megantic is a town of around 6000 persons and is near the U.S./Maine border.
the center of the small town was destroyed by fire- and that included a bar that was packed with patrons.
At least 30 homes and buildings were destroyed.
As of Monday afternoon- 13 bodies have been recovered from the scene with 37 people still reported missing by friends and family.
The train had been parked by it's crew as it awaited a relief crew in Nantes- a town about four miles away from Lac Megantic.
The original crew had left the train and was at a hotel in Nantes.
Somehow the train's brakes released while it was parked and unoccupied- and the train rolled down hill and picked up speed before it derailed on a curve in the center of Lac Megantic.
The explosion and fire occurred virtually instantly- basically trapping victims where they were.
The tankers on the train were reportedly carrying North Dakota crude oil to an eastern Canada location.
UPDATE - July 11- Authorities have declared 50 dead in this disaster.
That deadly toll including virtually all the persons who had been reported missing- many were in the Musi-Cafe that was consumed in the conflagration.