Ground saturation from rain derails Union Pacific coal train in Sparta, IL

Saturated ground causes train derailment

SPARTA, IL (KFVS) - A train hauling coal derailed in Sparta, Illinois shortly after it departed on Thursday, Feb. 7.

The Union Pacific train derailment was reported at 7:58 a.m. on the North side of the city. This was in the area of Airport Rd. and N. Miller Street.

According to the Sparta Police Department, It is believed the rain saturated ground shifted causing the derailment.

A spokesperson with Union Pacific said two locomotives and 13 cars filled with coal came off the tracks and ended up on their sides.

One locomotive was leaking oil and diesel fuel. The Union Pacific hazmat team is on site.

According to the Sparta Police Department, no one was hurt.

Approximately three crossings in Sparta are blocked by the rest of the train cars that did not derail. Crews hope to unhook this part of the train and have it moved out of the way soon.

Police say inspectors with Union Pacific Railroad are beginning to clean up the spilled coal.

The clean-up process is expected to take 24 hours.

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