Railroad cars burst into flames after train derails in Iowa; evacuations underway


Photo courtesy: Nathan Minten

SIBLEY, Iowa (NewsNation Now) — Evacuations are underway in Iowa after a train derailed Sunday afternoon, sending its cars bursting into flames and hazmat crews storming in, according to authorities.

The fiery derailment happened early Sunday afternoon on the southwest edge of Sibley, which is a town of about 3,000 people roughly 200 miles northwest of Des Moines. There were no immediate reports of injuries related to the derailment.

The Osceola County Sheriff’s Office said at least eight agencies are currently at the scene of the derailment to battle to blaze, NewsNation affiliate KCAU reported.

Photos and video of the derailment posted online Sunday show about 30 train cars piled up along the tracks with flames and a large plume of smoke coming from one end of the pile of cars.

Local media reports say authorities evacuated an area within 5 miles of the derailment.

Sibley Fire Chief Ken Huls told KIWA radio the train was hauling fertilizer and ammonium nitrate.

Nate Minten of Sibley told the Des Moines Register that smoke was still visible around 4:30 p.m. Sunday from his mother’s home.

“I could see smoke filling up a couple hundred feet at least,” said Minten who posted aerial drone video of the derailment online, “We didn’t hear any bangs or anything.”

An emergency text message Minten received about the derailment said the western end of Sibley west of Second Avenue was being evacuated.

The Associated Press and NewsNation affiliates KELO and KCAU contributed to this report.

Check back for updates on this developing story.

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