NS intermodal train crashes next to Pittsburgh tourist hot spot

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This photo shows a derailed and crashed Norfolk Southern intermodal train from a Pittsburgh "T" station platform for Station Square — one of the Pennsylvania city's busiest tourist attractions.
Port Authority of Allegheny County (Pa.)
PITTSBURGH — Don’t even think of taking a T train into downtown Pittsburgh on Monday — there’s a 7,000-foot intermodal train blocking the way.

Norfolk Southern officials confirm that a 57-car, 7,687-foot-long intermodal train bound to Chicago from northern New Jersey derailed on top of Port Authority of Allegheny County tracks at 1:13 p.m. Sunday, severing the light rail’s main line near Station Square.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that a T train had passed the area just minutes before the derailment.

Officials say no one was injured.

NS representative Jonathan Glass tells Trains News Wire that the train 4,838-ton train was hauling mostly “consumer goods that included housewares, food products, beverages, and other common household products found in retail shopping stores.”

Glass says contractors are on site and will spend the next 24 to 72 hours re-railing the train and removing derailed cars with heavy cranes.

Station Square is the shopping and event complex developed in and around the former Pittsburgh & Lake Erie station opposite downtown Pittsburgh on the Monongahela River. Certain websites report that the event center sees millions of visitors annually. The NS train dropped feet from the complex’s transit stop. The crash scene is also only a few hundred feet away from the famed Monongahela Incline funicular railway. CSX Transportation operates former P&LE and Baltimore & Ohio tracks nearest the river. NS operates former Pennsylvania Railroad tracks just up the hill.

Only after NS removes its equipment can Port Authority officials assess damage to the tracks where all northbound transit trains converge before heading into downtown Pittsburgh.

The Post-Gazette cites city of Pittsburgh Deputy Fire Chief Michael Mullen saying he was thankful there were no “fracking oil cars” involved in the derailment. Glass says NS apologizes to Pittsburgh residents for any inconvenience the derailment is causing.
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