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2 bodies found in derailment rubble
Cleanup crews found two bodies beneath the rubble of a train derailment and bridge collapse in Northbrook, Ill., a suburb of Chicago, officials said.
Glenview Fire Chief Wayne Globerger said workers found the bodies Thursday in a car that was underneath the viaduct when it collapsed, the Chicago Sun-Times reported Friday.
The accident occurred Wednesday.
“At the time of the accident, given the derailed coal cars and amount of debris, it was not immediately clear if any cars had been trapped underneath the collapsed bridge or if there had been any injuries,” Globerger said in a statement.
Deputy Glenview Village Manager Don Owen said officials do not believe anyone else was in the wreckage. The area was cleared and crews stopped looking for victims Thursday night, Owen said.
A Union Pacific Railroad spokesman said Thursday extreme heat causing steel rails to expand could be a possible cause of the derailment, the Chicago Tribune said.
The investigation likely will take months, officials said.
Preliminary findings ruled out bridge failure as causing the accident, railroad spokesman Mark Davis said. The 86-foot bridge was not designed to bear the weight of 28 coal cars that derailed, each weighing 75 tons to 85 tons, Davis said.
“We ruled out the bridge failing and then the train derailing, based on the discussion with the train crew,” and by examining images from a camera on the train, Davis said. “The derailment occurred and then what happened was that 28 cars piled onto the bridge structure. Under all that weight, the bridge went down.”
Davis said temporary tracks will be installed, the Tribune said. The railroad also will design and build a bridge to replace the fallen structure.
Copyright 2012 by United Press International