Officials with Union Pacific Railroad acknowledge that in the last five years there have been five train derailments near the western Iowa town of Carroll. However, U-P spokesperson Gene Hinkle says inspectors do not feel they are connected in any way.
"There’s no one common factor underneath all of them," Hinkle said. "They’ve been in different areas, some have been east of town and some west of town." The latest derailment happened Tuesday morning three miles west of Carroll. Twenty-five cars of the 103 car train left the tracks. No one was injured and repairs were made for trains to start running through the area again this morning (Wednesday). Hinkle says the cause of Tuesday’s derailment is still unknown, but he doubts it can be linked to other incidents in the area.
"The derailments have all had different causes, there’s been no one factor. Some have been because of mechanical reasons, one was a broken wheel and another was a broken pin," Hinkle said. Inspectors check the tracks around Carroll on a regular basis. Hinkle admits the frequency of derailments in the area is odd, but says it’s not something the company is overly concerned about.
"We certainly would like to have zero derailments, but unfortunately, due to a number of factors, they just occur sometimes," Hinkle said. The cars that jumped off the tracks Tuesday were mostly loaded with retail goods. The train was bound for Chicago.