A section of BNSF railway north of Madras was shut down Monday after a train struck a boulder, derailing five locomotives and one rail car.
About 2:30 a.m. Monday, a northbound train of 80 cars and five engines hauling general merchandise from Bakersfield, California, to Pasco, Washington, neared a boulder on the tracks about 20 miles north of Madras, according to BNSF spokeswoman Courtney Wallace. It began emergency braking but it was too late.
“It does take a long time to stop a train and unfortunately it was not able to stop,” Wallace said.
There were no reported injuries. All cars and locomotives remained upright, though a small amount of diesel fuel leaked on the ground, Wallace said. BNSF is working to contain the spill.
The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office initially responded but turned over the scene to BNSF.