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Train Derails Near L.A., Catches Fire

Story Filed: Thursday, June 15, 2000 7:51 PM EST

COLTON, Calif. (Reuters) - Seventeen cars of a freight train derailed outside this southern California city Thursday with six catching fire and one leaking sulfuric acid, officials said, but there were no reports of injury.

A spokesman for the San Bernardino County Fire Department said crews were also investigating a possible breach of the California-Nevada gasoline pipeline, which runs near the tracks outside Colton, 50 miles east of Los Angeles.

Television reports described the sulfuric acid leak as relatively minor, and authorities did not close a nearby freeway or evacuate any homes in the area.

``When the train derailed it broke the cement of a containment area that protects the pipeline,'' spokesman Dave Dowling said. ``We don't know at this point if there was product in the pipeline, if it was involved, if it was leaking or even if there was a breach.''

Dowling said the a fire was burning in six of the cars and television reports showed fire crews responding as smoke billowed from the train.

KABC-TV said the Union Pacific train was eastbound from Colton when it derailed.

-- (, June 15, 2000

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