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Train Carrying Toxic Chemicals Derails, Catches Fire In Tennessee

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Train Carrying Toxic Chemicals Derails, Catches Fire In Tennessee



Washington — A train carrying toxic chemicals derailed in Tennessee and caught fire, prompting a large-scale evacuation, firefighters said Thursday.

The train derailed near Maryville, close to the city of Knoxville, carrying acrylonitrile, a flammable, toxic compound that poses respiratory risks, firefighter Kermit Easterling said.

Some 5,000 residents are being evacuated, and firefighters are going door to door wearing breathing equipment to get people away from the fire, he said.

Firefighters are not battling the flames because of the dangers of acrylonitrile, and hazmat — hazardous material — teams have been called in to access the situation.

The train, which is also carrying containers of liquid petroleum gas, derailed just before midnight Wednesday, Easterling said.

There have been no reports of injuries, and a shelter has been set up at a local school for evacuated residents, the firefighter said.

File Photo: Freight Train Near Nashville Union Station, Reading Tom via Flickr 



  1. Daniel Jones July 2, 2015

    Yup, the corporate elite love our current transportation system.. it kills all those poor folk left and right.

    1. Independent1 July 5, 2015

      And it’s not just our transportation system. It also involves Republicans’ willingness to cut state budgets to the bone which results in cutting things like the oversight on industry in managing things like even manufacturing plants that can blow up. Remember the fertilizer plant in Texas which hadn’t had a safety inspection in 14 years because of a shortage of staff – that’s where a town was almost wiped off the map in an explosion; which if my memory serves me correctly resulted in about 50 people dying.

      1. Eleanore Whitaker July 5, 2015

        The reason these states don’t care how much pollution they spew into air, water or soil is that they know they won’t pay for it. WE will. It is time to demand our state politicians stop handing these states our tax dollars. If these states want to pollute, they have to pay for the pollution they create.

        1. Independent1 July 5, 2015

          Maybe part of FEMA’s charter could be changed to read: FEMA shall not provide disaster recovery assistance, for any disaster that occurs in a state which has averaged over the past year, sucking back in federal assistance from Washington – more than 95 cents/dollar of the tax revenues that it has contributed to Washington during that time.

          Unfortunately, this would also mean 8-10 blue states would be disqualified for disaster assistance – as it’s only 14 blue states that suck back in federal assistance less, than 95 cents/dollar of taxes they contribute to Washington.

          But, something like this might encourage states to be more careful with respect to the balance they have of federal aid to tax revenues contributed to Washington. Knowing that if they rely too heavily on federal aid, while deliberately maintaining substandard average state income levels which result in pauper level tax contributions to Washington, that they’re going to end up footing the bills for major disasters that may occur in their state.

          1. Eleanore Whitaker July 6, 2015

            Actually, FEMA, under Bush’s TX accountant, Brown, (of the infamous Katrina disaster) is pretty much gutted. This is precisely how these red states intended it to be.

            First, they raid SS, Medicare and Medicaid, with nary a single concern that working class Americans paid into these programs for years. In plantation mentality, you ALWAYS take what isn’t yours. Because as we all know, the plantation mentalities are soooo superior to the rest of humanity.

            When you consider that post Civil War, the blue states paid for red state reconstruction and for generations after, the red states have lived off the blue states, you see the true reasons for huge federal deficits.

            Every industry in the south and midwest are tied to the federal government by tax cuts and tax subsidies in triplicate what the blue states get. This is why they have NO intentions of upsetting the apple cart. In fact, the biggest danger for them now is that they have so financially drained the blue states by taking anywhere from $1.35 to $1.87 for the $1 they pay in federal taxes, that blue states are paying our $1 and getting barely 60 cents back on average AND having to pay out of state funds because jerks like Rand Paul and his henchmen of the GOP refuse to stop the glut of money going into red states.

            All that’s left now is to slash and burn, sequester and shut down the government to squeeze more from blue states. Their biggest problem to get re-elected? Sabotaging the Veterans they sent off to wars we didn’t need to get into.l

            Any veteran today will not vote GOP because they know to do that is voting against their fellow vets who need the most help.

          2. Independent1 July 6, 2015

            More fodder for a Michael Moore movie. I’m really on a bandwagon to get Michael Moore to create a movie that would really bring to light to a lot of Americans just how disastrous GOP governance has been for America this past 100 years; and apparently also, the extent to which Republican politicians in Red States are becoming nothing but leaches on the federal government.

          3. Eleanore Whitaker July 6, 2015

            The reality that some of us seem to forget is that we who are paying the most in federal tax dollars to these states do have the right to refuse to support any state that places states’ rights they know force us to pay for their debts, above federal law.

            TX is a good example of this. Remember that chemical disaster in West TX? That Agri-business had numerous violations. As did the BP Horizon Deepwater rig. Nothing was ever said about them being out of compliance. Why? Because there is a GOP majority that rules against any federal law and compliance.

            But wait, it gets worse. Everyone thinks that President Obama vetoed Keystone. Yet, people living in the 5 states affected most by that pipeline are suing their states for allowing the state to take all or parts of their real property by eminent domain.

            In one case, one NB homeowner’s home was set off its foundation when the heavy duty equipment started digging up their front lawns. TX got its GOP to okay that land grab. And, all they had to do was claim it was “an interstate project.” Now, another NB home had to be sold when the Keystone construction crew hit a natural gas pipeline and the home filled with gas.

          4. Independent1 July 6, 2015

            Those are the kinds of incidents that need to be included in a movie and dramatized such that more and more Americans get the picture of how heavy handed and corrupt the GOP has become. And just how dangerous Republicans have become to all of us.

          5. Eleanore Whitaker July 6, 2015

            It’s difficult to do these days with the abuses to the First Amendment in terms of the media. When you have only 6 billionaires controlling the entire US media, they get to print, as Murdoch stated back in 2006, “What I tell them to.”

            Unless the Justice Department cracks down or puts more teeth into existing laws regarding abuses to the Constitution, the GOP will continue to launder their corruption as they please and force us to pay the consequences.

          6. Independent1 July 6, 2015

            Exactly why I think the only option we have to unmasking the GOP’s corruption and deceit, is to have someone like Michael Moore create a movie with a very descriptive title like “The disasters resulting from GOP Governance’. There may be someone else, but I’m not really into movies – so I wouldn’t know if there were someone better than Michael to do a movie.

          7. Eleanore Whitaker July 6, 2015

            Wow…What a great idea! I wish Moore would do that.

  2. Eleanore Whitaker July 3, 2015

    More FEMA money for another red state disaster they created? How much more of our tax dollars do we have to hand to these states who refuse to face facts? Chemical transport via truck and rail is hazardous. They refuse to accept EPA regulations, get their politicians to water the regs down and then WE end up paying for cost of cleanup.

    1. Independent1 July 5, 2015

      Disasters don’t matter, that’s all part of the game. It’s all about the cheapest way to make money irrespective of how many disasters that may created. All anyone has to do is do a search on ‘Nigeria oil spills or disasters’ to get a real sense for just how willing companies related to the oil industry will go in destroying a country all in the name of PROFITS!!


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