MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — Cleanup efforts have continued after a train derailed Tuesday near the Sarasota-Manatee County line.
It happened about four miles north of the Sarasota Bradenton International Airport.
Southern Manatee Fire Rescue says five of the train cars that toppled over were carrying sheetrock, and a tanker that’s now on its side is filled with 30,000 gallons of propane.
Seminole Gulf Railway operates the train. The company’s vice president told NBC News that they would be working to “clear the cars in a safe manner this coming week.”
Crews are working to rebuild the mangled track. Since there is no damage to any valves, SMFR chief said crews decided to keep the propane inside the tanker then, turn it upright.
“We’re not going to offload the tanker,” said Chief Robert Bounds.” They want upright it with the product onboard and they think they can put back on track once they bypass and put back on the frame and take it back down south to Fort Myers area.”
Chief Bounds said his crews are monitoring the tanker using thermal cameras and gas detecting equipment.
“We’ve taken all our factors in the consideration, more specifically public safety, which is our primary job,” he said. “I can reassure the public is to our presence out there constantly that we are on top of the situation, and we have hourly contact with these folks know exactly what’s going on.”
Chief Bounds recognized the incident happened hours before a train crash in Greece that killed dozens of people, and weeks after the East Palestine train derailment spilling hazardous chemicals.
“Everybody’s safe right now we’re constantly monitoring the situation, when they do go to upright the tank, we will be there in force just in case there’s anything that leaked,” he said. “We’re prepared to take care of that and mitigate the scene as necessary.”
Chief Bounds said Seminole Gulf Railway has workers and subcontractors that specialize in handling this type of debris.
Fire crews are monitoring the situation and have not found any leaks. At this time, the cause of the derailment is under investigation.
The Federal Railroad Administration reports more than 4,713 derailments across the country last year all with different levels of severity.