Nothing remains but concrete building foundations near the epicenter - Date/Photographer unknown.
8 July 2013
5 Things We Know
5 Things We Don't Know
Lake Megantic Quebec - Here are five things we know about the train derailment in Lake Megantic on Saturday.
1. 13 are confirmed dead and 40 people are still missing in the town of 6,000 after the freight train, operated by Montreal Maine & Atlantic Railway, sped downhill 11 kilometres from Nantes, Quebec, at 01:15 Saturday morning and derailed. There were 40 buildings destroyed in the series of explosions that razed three blocks of the downtown.
2. There were five locomotives, and each tanker on the 72-car freight train was carrying 100 tons of crude oil. The train was destined for a Saint John, New Brunswick, refinery.
3. The engineer had parked the train at Nantes, 11 kilometres to the west of the crash site. He had shut down four of the five locomotive units on the train, a standard procedure, before heading to Lake Megantic to sleep at 23:25.
4. At some point after that, part of the train caught fire in Nantes. Local fire crews were called to put out the blaze.
5. Somehow, the fifth locomotive was also shut down. The crash happened about two hours later.
Here are the five things we don't know.
1. Were there hand brakes applied, and if not, why? Did someone tamper with the braking system?
2. Why was the fifth locomotive shut down when it was standard operating procedure to leave one running to keep the brakes charged?
3. Was the earlier fire at Nantes related and, if so, how? Did the shutting down of that locomotive cause the brakes to release? Locals were often irritated by trains being parked while still running their engines.
4. The company had a spill not far from the crash site a couple of weeks ago, and there are reports from the past of pieces of rail missing from the track. Is this true and could these reports be linked?
5. What does the last engineer on board have to say? No media has been able to talk to that person and it's not yet known whether that engineer has spoken to the Transportation Safety Board of Canada.