MONTGOMERY, W. Va. — Response teams with the West Virginia Train Derailment Response Unified Command completed soil excavation around the derailment site Wednesday morning. Environmental experts working with the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection collected and analyzed soil samples to ensure all impacted soil was removed. The impacted soil is being held at the site with environmental protections in place while response crews build a temporary access road from the site to Route 61. The access road will minimize impact to the community by providing direct access to the site for trucks transporting the excavated soil to a certified disposal facility.
“We are continually working with our partners in the Unified Command to limit the impact to the surrounding community as we work to restore the area,” said Dennis Matlock, Federal On-Scene Coordinator. “We appreciate the community’s cooperation and patience throughout the clean-up process.”
Response crews will begin backfilling operations to restore the derailment site Wednesday. Once complete, they will lay a new rail bed and tracks to restore rail service through the area.
Twelve rail cars from the derailment remain on-site and are positioned for removal once the railroad tracks are in place.
Response crews have also recovered a total of approximately 85,000 gallons of oily-water mixture from containment trenches dug along the river embankment near the derailment site as of Wednesday morning. The product and oily-water mixture is being transferred to CSX’s nearby Handley Yard. Response teams are following all federal oil-transfer guidelines to ensure safe operations.
Environmental experts working with the Unified Command continue to monitor air and water samples to ensure the safety of the community and response teams. Monitoring reports to date show no impact to air quality, drinking water or public safety. Air and water quality reports are available online through the EPA website at: http://www.epaosc.org/site/site_profile.aspx?site_id=9762
Tuesday the U.S. Coast Guard announced that the Kanawha River has been re-opened. Boaters are encouraged to travel with caution through the area.
CSX continues to support the needs of Montgomery residents and those affected by the derailment through its community Outreach Center, located at the Glenn Ferris Inn. The Outreach Center will be open 8 a.m. – 7 p.m. through Thursday and 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. on Friday to compensate residents who evacuated their homes and those who experienced an extended power outage (over 24 hours).
Residents visiting the center are reminded to bring a form of identification (driver’s license or government ID) and AEP power bill. Residents are encouraged to bring any receipts documenting evacuation-related expenses. Households that experienced extended power outages must have the person whose name is on the bill present in order to receive compensation. If possible, only one household representative should come to check in at the Outreach Center.
Residents who are not able to visit the Outreach Center can request compensation by mailing a letter that includes name, home address (P.O. Boxes not accepted), phone number, social security number and a photocopy of your driver’s license to the following address:
Attention: Mount Carbon accident response team
935 7th Avenue
Huntington, WV 25701
CSX will respond with an information package including further instructions, how to provide additional wage information and paperwork for itemizing damages. Compensation via mail usually takes approximately 4-6 weeks.
Residents with questions who cannot reach the Outreach Center may contact 1-877-TellCSX (1-877-835-5279).