UPDATE: Residents being allowed back into Ellendale


UPDATE: Several rural homes within 1,200 feet of the derailment remain evacuated, but major highways are reopened.

The Rochester Fire Department HAZMAT Team is still providing air monitoring around the flammable gas cars to detect any changing conditions. Union Pacific is mobilizing its monitoring team and once operational, the HAZMAT team with leave the scene. It’s estimated that the team will leave before 7 p.m.

Union Pacific has assembled a force of heavy equipment for recovery operations, cleanup and track restoration.

Previous coverage below. 

UPDATE: Authorities say residents are being allowed back into the city away from the area of the derailment.

Crews remain on the scene and residents are not allowed within 400 feet of the accident. Residents are reminded to abide by road closures and barricades.

The air space restriction is also being removed. At this time, there is no threat to the public outside of the “hot zone” of 400 feet.

Previous coverage below. 

ELLENDALE, Minn. – The city of Ellendale has been evacuated after a reported four-car Union Pacific train derailment on Friday morning.

According to Union Pacific, at least one car was carrying liquid petroleum. A no-fly zone has been enacted over the city.

Local first responders on the scene requested the Rochester Fire Department’s HAZMAT team and 691 residents were evacuated.

NRHEG School District has cancelled school for the day. According to the city of Ellendale on Facebook, all are welcome at the Geneva United Methodist Church outside of town.

Local American Red Cross volunteers are supporting evacuees and first responders with food and hydration.

“We’re working closely with our partners, including Geneva United Methodist Church in Ellendale, to support those displaced from the derailment and those responding to help,” said Melanie Tschida, executive director for the American Red Cross serving southeast Minnesota.

The train was traveling from St. Paul to North Platte, Nebraska.

This post will be updated as details develop. 

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