WKYT | Lexington, Kentucky | News

Cleanup and Questions in Estill County

By: Mandy Gaither Email
By: Mandy Gaither Email

Folks got there first close-up look at the crash site in Estill County one day after four runaway rail cars struck two parked locomotives sparking a blaze and and potentially dangerous chemicals in to the air and on the ground.

As crews continued to clean up, the white snow stood out as it fell on the black charred wreckage. Because of the derailment, the county lost thousands of dollars and even though they'll be reimbursed, the judge executive wants some answers.

"I would like to know why we didn't know earlier that it was coming and why we weren't notified more quickly what was on the cars so we could have made quicker decisions," Wallace Taylor said.

While CSX still doesn't know what went wrong, they tell me they're looking into two things in their investigation. First, whether the brakes on these freight cars were working at the time of the accident and second, did their crew do anything wrong.

"Glad to be back home? Why sure!" 81-year-old Howard Calmes said. He is one of dozens of residents who were evacuated yesterday. He could see and smell the black smoke rising over the hill in front of his house. He says the fumes smelled like paint thinner.

"We left pretty quick. It was about 6 or 7, I don't remember, when they started letting us come back home," Calmes said.

While there were concerns the wreck may have caused chemicals to seep into the water system, today the county has gotten the all clear and says the water is safe to drink.

CSX officials tell us they're testing the soil around the crash site because they want to know what chemicals are in the ground so they can in properly dispose them.

They say the investigation into the cause of the crash will take at least five days.


WKYT

2851 Winchester Rd. Lexington, Ky 40509 859-299-0411 - switchboard 859-299-2727 - newsroom
Copyright © 2002-2014 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 5221501 - wkyt.com/a?a=5221501
Gray Television, Inc.