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Train Carrying Crude Oil Derails in Eastern US

FILE – Workers remove damaged CSX tanker cars carrying crude oil after they derailed and caught fire along the James River near downtown Lynchburg, Virginia, May 1, 2014.

A freight train carrying crude oil derailed in the eastern U.S. state of West Virginia Monday, sending at least one rail car into the Kanahwa River.

The CSX train derailed in the early afternoon about 54 kilometers, or 33 miles, southeast of the state capital of Charleston.

Local officials at the scene said at least one house and two tank cars were on fire. Amid a snowstorm, residents were evacuated from the nearby towns of Adena and Boomber Bottom, Reuters news agency reported a local TV station as saying.

There were no immediate reports of any injuries or fatalities.

Local media showed images of large flames and a thick plume of black smoke near a partly frozen river, with a number of houses nearby.

Lawrence Messina, a spokesman for the West Virginia Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety, told Reuters that CSX Corp. officials said the train was carrying only crude oil.

While it was not clear where the train was headed, it was traveling the same route as a train that derailed last year, setting off an explosion near the city of Lynchburg, Virginia.

Some information for this report was contributed by Reuters.

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