July 10, 2013
Lieutenant Gregg Hastings
Public Information Officer
(503) 731-3020 ext 247
Union Pacific Railroad Media Relations
Photograph links valid at least 30 days - Source: Oregon State Police
Emergency responders and Union Pacific Railroad (UPRR) officials are now reporting no significant hazardous material leak occurred at the site of Wednesday morning's train derailment along UPRR tracks on the north side of Highway 203 east of La Grande in Union County. The derailment, which was updated to 27 total rail cars, led to a several hour closure of an eight-mile stretch of the highway while responders got a closer look to assess the extent the derailment and any potential public hazard.
On July 10, 2013 at approximately 1:45 a.m., the train derailment occurred along a section of tracks north of Highway 203 near Hot Lake. The tracks run parallel along the east side of the highway. There are no confirmed injuries to anyone on the train. Incident Command led by La Grande Rural Fire Department, identified at least two tankers containing hazardous materials. As a precaution, a few area residents were evacuated until a closer assessment was completed. These residents have been allowed to return home and one lane for area traffic is expected to be re-opening soon.
Not all of the 27 rail cars involved in the derailment overturned and some remained upright. Questions regarding the involved train, transported contents, and clean up at the derailment site should be directed to Union Pacific Railroad.
Emergency responding agencies on scene included La Grande Rural Fire Department, Island City Fire Department, Union County Sheriff's Office, Oregon State Police, ODOT, Union Pacific Railroad, and Oregon Regional HazMat Team 10 from Hermiston.
Traffic updates are available on ODOT's website www.TripCheck.com. ODOT will remain on scene to handle traffic as needed during the day.
### www.oregon.gov/OSP ###