Delays on MBTA's Fitchburg Line Over Freight Train That Derailed Thu.

Officials say the derailment didn't cause any injuries or impact to the environment

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Most of the freight train that derailed Thursday in Ayer, Massachusetts, have been removed from the site as of Friday morning, in work that impacted commuters.

Five train cars carrying 10 shipping containers of trash and recycling materials toppled over on Thursday — it's not yet clear what prompted the derailment, which officials have said took place while the train had stopped.



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Officials say the derailment didn't cause any injuries or impact to the environment.

Crews were on the site, near Sculley Road, through the night, trying to figure out how to get the train cars moved out. Four of the cars were removed as of 9:30 a.m. Friday, according to transportation company CSX, which co-owns the train line.

Officials with CSX and the state and local governments have noted that there was nothing hazardous on board the derailed train, and nothing leaked into the environment.

Five train cars carrying trash went off the tracks Thursday.

Still, with a brook nearby, the local fire department didn't want to take any chances.

“We took a look at that and there’s nothing leaking under the cars but as a precaution, we put some booms on the waterway on the other side to make sure if something does like it would get caught," Ayer Fire Department Chief Tim Johnston said.

Meanwhile, commuter rail trains have been able to get by on the other tracks. Commuter rail operator Keolis originally said that there would be no impact in terms of service on Friday morning, but said Friday morning that Fitchburg Line trains may see delays up to 20 minutes in both directions between Littleton/I-495 and Wachusett.

Five train cars came off the tracks Thursday in Ayer; no dangerous material was on board.

The cause of the derailment remains under investigation.

Most of the cars remained on the tracks; Norfolk Southern engines were attached to the train.

Transportation company CSX said its personnel were responding to the incident, as the line on which occurred is jointly owned with Norfolk Southern. The derailed train was operated by Springfield Terminals, and the incident didn't result in any injuries or impacts to the environment — nothing leaked or spilled, according to CSX.

The Federal Railroad Administration said Friday that the train was operated by Pan Am Railways, which is owned by CSX. Norfolk Southern Railway was not involved in the derailment, aside from a Pan Am employee operating a Norfolk Southern train because of an agreement in place on that section of the line.

Norfolk Southern was the rail operator at the center of a fiery derailment in East Palestine, Ohio, in early February in which about 50 cars derailed, spilling hazardous materials and forcing evacuations of area residents.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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