Digest: Florida commuter lines shutting down because of approaching hurricane

News Wire Digest for Aug. 1: Report says investment firms are investigating bid for Kansas City Southern; two injured by chemical at Tempe derailment cleanup
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Saturday morning rail news in brief:

Tri-Rail, SunRail suspending operations because of hurricane

Both Florida commuter rail operations are being suspended because of approaching Hurricane Isaias. Miami-area commuter service Tri-Rail is suspending service as of today, Aug. 1, until further notice. The South Florida Regional Transportation Authority began securing crossing gates and making other preparations on Friday. Follow the Tri-Rail website for updates including information on resumption of service. Orlando-area commuter railroad SunRail will suspend service on Monday because of the approaching storm, and will begin its preparations today, including securing grade crossings, storing rolling stock, and securing equipment along the rail corridor. Watch the SunRail website for updates.

Report: Investment firms may make bid for Kansas City Southern
Two major private equity firms are exploring a combined takeover bid for Kansas City Southern, the Wall Street Journal reports in a paywalled article. Blackstoned Group and Global Infrastructure Partners are working together on the potential deal and speaking to banks about financing. A potential purchase could cost as much as $21 billion, the Journal reports; there is no guarantee the investors will make a formal offer or that the railroad would be receptive.

Worker hospitalized after chemical accident at Tempe derailment site
One worker was hospitalized and another declined transportation to the hospital after being sprayed with the chemical cyclohexanone while cleaning up Wednesday’s derailment and fire involving a Union Pacific train in Tempe, Ariz. The Arizona Republic reports the first worker, a 52-year-old man was hospitalized with serious but non-life-threatening injuries. Cyclohexanone, used as a solvent, is flammable and toxic. The newspaper also reports a half-dozen local, state, and federal agencies — including the National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Railroad Administration — are investigating the derailment, along with Union Pacific’s own investigation.



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