Train accident near I-81 could be major issue for Syracuse football fans tonight
Fri, 11 Nov 2011 19:16:22 GMT —
Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner just held a press conference a few blocks from the scene of this afternoon's train derailment. She says two train cars overturned, one containing soy beans and the other propane. Mayor Miner said after extensive testing officials have determined that propane is not leaking from the car. However, she says the clean-up process could take as long as two days. So far, 50 to 60 homes have been evacuated. The mayor says she doesn't anticipate the need for further evacuations. Any neighbor impacted that needs help should call 701-0303 or go to the evacuation center at 826 Westcott Street. Mayor
Currently, both lanes of I-81 remain closed tonight between Rt 690 and Rt 481. There is no word on when the interstate will reopen. Miner says the decision to close the interstate was made as a safety precaution.
Mayor Miner said her biggest worry now is the safety of people traveling to the SU game tonight. She says no major cleanup will take place during the game in order to ensure everyone's safety who will be on the hill.
She has asked all who plan to go to the game to take extra caution, leaving two hours in advance to accommodate using alternate routes. We have a complete list of suggested alternative routes from the Syracuse Police Department.
There was a train accident around 2p.m. Friday in the area of East Colvin Annex in Syracuse, just south of Oakwood Cemetary, between the Harrison/Adams Street and East Colvin Street exits in Syracuse.
Syracuse Police say interstate 81 is shutdown in both directions at this time. Traffic is being diverted to I-690.
One train overturned and is on its side. It is a tanker carrying propane gas. There is currently no odor to tell if the tanker is leaking, but no leaks have been detected at this time.
Syracuse Fire Department says the most difficult thing for them will be to offload propane from the train. This operation could last into the night, possibly overnight.
Police have evacuated pedestrians from the area and an estimated fifty residents in the area of Benedict and Berwyn Avenues have been evacuated. The evacuations are on the east side of the tracks between I-81 and Mt. Sinai.
A shelter has been set up for those who have been evacuated at the Westcott Community Center on 826 Westcott St the number at the shelter is 478-8634. If more people are evacuated tonight, Red Cross will set up more shelters.
If you are an Syracuse University student or employee living off-campus and you are asked by Police to evacuate, please go to Goldstein Student Center on South Campus. If you don't have a means of transportation to South Campus, please call 443-5318.
People who specialize in this type of accident are on the way to the scene. CSX is also on the way to the scene. Earlier this year, two CSX trains collided in East Syracuse .
At this time, police do not know what caused this accident.
Fans headed to the Syracuse University football game may see major delays and changed traffic patterns.
People planning to drive through Syracuse are advised to leave extra travel time.
CNY Central has a crew on the scene and are waiting for more information from police. We TMll bring you information as it becomes available.