Fayette County, West Virginia, Train Derailment Sparks House Fire

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A freight train carrying crude oil derailed Monday in southern West Virginia, causing an explosion that set at least one house on fire, according to authorities.

Several of the train cars spilled oil into the Kanawha River, east of Montgomery, and caught fire, prompting an evacuation order for a mile-and-a-half around the area where the train skipped the tracks at about 1:30 p.m. ET, according to NBC affiliate WSAZ. Only one train car, of 109, actually fell into the river.

One person was injured, officials said, but there were no deaths reported. Some 200 people needed to be evacuated.

West Virginia American Water, the company that maintains the local water supply said their Montgomery plant, closest to the accident, was shut down at about 2:30 p.m. Some 2000 customers are affected and are being asked to conserve water.

West Virginia American Water "is working with emergency responders and the Bureau for Public Health on continued response efforts," the company said in a statement.


— Elisha Fieldstadt