ME - Train loses cars on border, Locomotive bearing pulp from G-P mill : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Tuesday, October 31, 2000 Train loses cars on border, Locomotive bearing pulp from G-P mill By Diana Graettinger, Of the NEWS Staff

ST. STEPHEN, New Brunswick B Three railroad boxcars filled with pulp derailed Monday morning near Calais, Maine.

The 11-car train had just left the Georgia-Pacific Corp. pulp and paper mill in Baileyville, Maine, and was about five miles north of the Calais-St. Stephen border when three of the cars derailed onto their sides.

BIt had 10 loads and one emptyB boxcar, said David Fink, executive vice president of Guilford Rail in North Billerica, Mass. No one was injured.

Fink said three of the 11 cars left the track. BOur crane is en route and we will pull them on and put them back on the track ... and probably be all done this time tomorrow,B he said Monday.

G-P spokesman Gaile Nicholson said the boxcars were carrying 250 tons of bailed pulp destined for a U.S. customer. BWe donBt anticipate that [the accident] will have any impact on our customer, and we expect the shipment to be back on line no later than Wednesday,B she said.

The Guilford spokesman said that unlike a train wreck three years ago, the boxcars were not carrying any hazardous materials. In May 1997, two railroad tank cars, each filled with 90 tons of liquid chlorine, derailed and tumbled down an embankment to the bottom of a small hill in the Calais Industrial Park, north of the city.

The force of the 1997 accident ripped the wheelbases off the cars, but there were no chlorine leaks. The company blamed the incident on a failure of one of the iron rails, which spread away from its underpinnings and caused the wheels to slip off the track. It took workers several days to get the cars back on track.

Guilford is investigating the cause of MondayBs accident. BOur people will go up there and check the different issues, mechanical, the boxcars, the speed of the train ... and the condition of the tracks,B Fink said. He said all the companyBs locomotives have computers aboard. BIt allows us to download information about the train when the incident occurred. How fast it was going, if the brakes were on, if the whistle was being blown, those kinds of things,B he said.

-- Doris (, November 01, 2000

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