LIVINGSTONE, KY – On Wednesday, a train mishap in Livingstone, Kentucky, led to a significant sulfur leak, sparking a fire and causing some locals to leave their homes. The incident, involving the derailment of 16 train cars around mid-afternoon, resulted in molten sulfur spilling from two cars and igniting a fire.
By the following day, the train’s operator, CSX, announced that the fire had been successfully extinguished and it was safe for residents to return home. CSX worked closely with local emergency services in Rockcastle County to monitor the situation and deployed specialized equipment to assess air quality in the vicinity.
Prior to this, CSX had sent specialized equipment to the scene to monitor the air quality, as the combustion of molten sulfur can release sulfur dioxide. The company also footed the bill for around 112 locals to temporarily move to Mt. Vernon until the situation was under control.
Although evacuation was not compulsory, local officials gave residents the choice to leave if they wished. A government representative stated that they had recommended residents to evacuate, but the final decision was left to them.
Governor Andy Beshear thanked the first responders for their hard work in managing the situation. He acknowledged that there was still work to be done but expressed relief that the families in Livingston could spend the rest of their Thanksgiving at home.
This incident in Kentucky is not an isolated event but part of a concerning trend of train derailments across the country over the past year. One of the most significant incidents occurred in East Palestine, Ohio, where a derailment led to toxic chemicals being released into the air, causing over $800 million in damages. The repercussions of that incident are still being felt today, with cleanup crews continuing to remove contaminated water and soil from the town.