MONTGOMERY, W.Va. -Federal investigators say a broken rail that wasn’t found on two previous inspections led to a fiery oil train derailment in southern West Virginia in February, AP reports.
The Federal Railroad Administration on Friday announced the results of its investigation into the Feb. 16 derailment during a snowstorm in Mount Carbon.
The FRA says the broken rail resulted from a vertical split head rail defect. The problem was missed by CSX Corp. and a contractor on two separate inspections in the months leading up the accident.
The CSX train was carrying 3 million gallons of Bakken crude oil. Twenty-seven of the train’s 109 cars derailed. Twenty cars leaked crude oil.
The derailment shot fireballs into the sky, burned down a nearby house and caused fires on the ground that smoldered for days.