A train crash that released toxic fumes has left eight people dead in South Carolina.

More than 200 people in South Carolina and neighboring Georgia were hospitalized Thursday when a large freight train carrying chlorine gas crashed into a small locomotive near the border.

Nearly all of those hospitalized were sickened by the chlorine gas, which is known to cause respiratory and central nervous system problems that can be fatal.

Authorities have ordered more than 5,000 people within a 1.6-kilometer radius of the crash to evacuate the area. 

The gas continued to leak Friday, but the leak had slowed considerably, allowing workers to begin cleaning up the crash site.

Authorities are still investigating the cause of the train crash.

Some information for this story provided by Reuters and AP.