Minnesota train derailment, ethanol fire renew safety fears

PRINSBURG, Minn. (AP) — Authorities say a train hauling ethanol and corn syrup derailed around 1 a.m. Thursday and caught fire in Minnesota.

Hundreds of residents within 1/2 mile of the crash were ordered to evacuate in Raymond, about 100 miles west of Minneapolis. But that order was lifted around noon.

Railroad company operator BNSF says 22 cars derailed, including about 10 carrying ethanol, and four caught fire. There there were no injuries. CEO Katie Farmer has apologized for the derailment and said the cleanup would begin as soon as the fire was extinguished.

Gov. Tim Walz and railroad officials said they weren’t especially concerned about groundwater contamination because much of the ethanol will burn off and the ground remains frozen.