Powder River Coal

An eastbound BNSF Railway coal train waits in Alliance's north yards Jan. 28. On Monday a BNSF train derailed near Casper, Wyo. Many of the coal trains that originate at Wyoming mines travel through Alliance to destinations farther east and south.

*Editor’s Note: Times-Herald calls, messages sent to the office of Ross Lane, BNSF Railway media representative for Wyoming and Montana, were not immediately returned.

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — Two workers were injured in a coal train crash that sent a pair of diesel-fueled locomotives into an eastern Wyoming river, contaminating the waterway.

The Casper Star-Tribune reports an engineer and a conductor for BNSF Railway suffered non-life-threatening injuries when one loaded coal train rear-ended another in a remote canyon north of Wendover on Monday afternoon. Joe Hunter with the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality says none of the spilled coal reached the North Platte River, but as many as 6,000 gallons (22,712 liters) of diesel could have spilled from the locomotives.

He called that "a worst-case scenario" and added that the cleanup could be completed by the end of the week.

BNSF spokeswoman Amy McBeth says the crash caused three locomotives and four cars to derail.

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