DUPO - A major train derailment occurred in the 300 block of Main Street in Dupo on Tuesday afternoon about 1:15 p.m.

The derailment sparked huge flames from the train cars and smoke visible for miles away. There were 16 cars were derailed in the accident, St. Clair County Emergency Management Agency Director Herb Simmons said. He also said that Adams subdivision was evacuated along with Dupo Schools and other nearby neighborhoods. Dupo Schools were sent to Columbia High School for dismissal. Some other areas were also evacuated.

Union Pacific issued the following statement after the derailment:

"Around 12:45 p.m., a derailment occurred in Union Pacific's Dupo Yard near Carondelet Avenue between Main and Adams Road. Both crossings are closed. The train was being built for departure at the time of the derailment, which caused a tank car to catch fire. Initial information from the scene indicates that the tank car contains a flammable liquid called methyl isobutyl ketone. It is typically used as a solvent.

"Union Pacific is working with area first responders to put out the fire. Our yard and nearby intermodal ramp were safely evacuated. At this time, no injuries have been reported."

Dan Brannan also contributed to this story

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