Truck-Train Collision Results in Explosion & Fatality – Town of Glade Spring

Article Submitted by:  Lieutenant Andrew Burke, Glade Spring Volunteer Fire Department; Photos courtesy of TriCities News and WCYB.

Glade Spring Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched to the Town Square for a report of a train hitting a tractor trailer with explosions. Members at the station were already alerted due to the face that the impact was felt throughout the town.

Engine 130 responded within three minutes, once on scene on Boxwood Street, scene size-up concluded a train had struck a tractor trailer, the tractor trailer had exploded and was in several pieces on both sides of the track.

Tanker 134 arrived in the Town Square at this point and began extinguishing the fire. Firefighters utilized four 1-¾”  cross lays to extinguish the fire. Additional members began evacuating homes in the area due to the size of the fire and train contents.  The crew off Engine 130 began extinguishment at Boxwood Street and worked toward the crew of Tanker 134 in the town square. Engine 133 arrived to supply Engine 130 on Boxwood.

Mutual Aid from Meadowview Fire Department was called in due to the size of the fire.

Central Dispatch advised that Norfolk-Southern Railroad, 911, Virginia State Police, and Glade Spring Police were alerted.

By standers advised that they did not see the driver of the tractor trailer after the initial collision.

MVFD arrived and began initial attacks with GSVFD members. After several minutes, the fire was extinguished in all areas.  The scene at this point was secured due to nature of the incident.

Chilhowie Fire Department was called for additional Hazmat supplies. Hazmat booms and pads were placed as needed for contaminate control. Norfolk and Southern arrived and the investigation proceeded.

MVFD was relieved of the scene at this point to return to station. GSVFD remained on scene for the duration of the investigation. GSVFD was advised that the wreckage would cleaned up the next day and were relieved of the call. All units cleared the call at 23:45.

GSVFD would like to thank all parties involved with the incident for a quick and accurate response. The GSVFD is very fortnate to have a the support of neighboring agencies in this incident along with the MVC on Route 91.The GSVFD would also like to thank the Glade Spring Town Council members for assisting in restroom and food for the responders.  Everyone also please keep Norfolk and Southren along with the drivers family in your prayers.

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