Train derailment forces evacuation in Cypress County

Irvine derailment

Train derailment forces evacuation in Cypress County

Shortly after 6 p.m., Cypress County declared a local state of emergency.

Investigators are trying to determine what caused a train derailment in southeastern Alberta that forced people from their homes and closed a stretch of the Trans-Canada Highway.

Dalton says there is a backup of trains from Irvine to Medicine Hat that will need to make its way through the Hamlet - meaning residents will be hearing the increased volume of trains.

AHS has said they are on scene with fire and the RCMP but that it's too soon to comment on reports of injuries due to the "fluidity" of the situation.

CP Rail issued a statement late Friday evening saying the train derailed at 3:20 pm and was carrying styrene, which were leaking from the top valves. Residents were told to report to an evacuation reception centre in nearby Dunmore.

Some were seen with smoke coming from them.

CP said in the release that none of the cars involved in the derailment had been breached but that it "had fire suppression systems on hand if required".

"When we pulled up, we could see that the train was derailed".

She said the locomotives were still on the tracks, as was the end of the train.

Before the evacuation order was lifted, Cypress County Councillor Robin Kurpjuweit said Friday afternoon that residents were being asked to check their properties and then head straight to the check-in station so officials know whose homes are OK and who is safe and sound.

"And then after that, you want to kick into your training".

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