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Accident Investigations

Railroad Accident Investigation Involving A Freight Train Derailment and Hazardous Materials Release in Paulsboro, New Jersey

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  • Accident No: DCA13MR002
  • Accident Type: Office of Railroad
  • Location: Paulsboro, NJ
  • Date: 11/30/2012

On November 30, 2012, at approximately 7 a.m. (EST), a southbound Conrail freight train, consisting of two locomotives and 82 cars, derailed seven cars while traveling over a moveable bridge spanning Mantua Creek in Paulsboro, N.J. Four tank cars, three containing vinyl chloride and one containing ethanol, came to rest in Mantua Creek. One of the derailed tank cars was breached and released approximately 20,000 gallons of vinyl chloride into the creek and surrounding area. No fatalities resulted from the accident; the train conductor and several residents were treated at local hospitals for exposure to vinyl chloride and released. According to Conrail, the initial estimated equipment damage, which does not include environmental remediation, is $450,654.

The derailment analysis along with conclusions and a determination of probable cause will be provided when the investigation is completed and adopted by the Board.
Follow us on twitter (@ntsb) for announcements related to the investigation.

Chairman Hersman receives a briefing on Friday's bridge collapse, train derailment and hazardous materials release in Paulsboro, NJ.

Media briefing Sunday December 2 on the investigation into the bridge collapse, derailment and haz-mat release in Paulsboro, New Jersey.

Investigator In Charge (IIC) Jim Southworth and NTSB investigative team at site of train derailment in Paulsboro, New Jersey.

NTSB holds media briefing Monday December 3 on N.J. train derailment and hazmat release.

Chairman Hersman briefs Paulsboro officials, incl Mayor Hamilton, on status of the investigation into train accident.

Investigators look at instruments in a locomotive involved in today's train derailment in Paulsboro, NJ.

Rail Investigator Mike Hiller examines one of the trains involved in today's accident in Paulsboro, NJ.

Scene photo of today's bridge collapse, train derailment & haz-mat release in Paulsboro, NJ.

IIC Jim Southworth on the scene of the Paulsboro, NJ train derailment and hazmat release.

NTSB investigative team discussing the Paulsboro, NJ train derailment and hazmat release.

NTSB hazmat specialists Paul Stancil and Muhamed El-Zoghbi discussing the release of hazardous material in Paulsboro, NJ.

Recorder specialist George Haralampopoulos prepares to remove a recorder from a locmotive involved in the derailment.
Antion Downs taking photos on the scene of the Paulsboro, NJ train derailment and hazmat release. Police Chief Chris Wachter discussing the Paulsboro, NJ train derailment with Chairman Hersman.

Cresence Stafford, Muhamed El-Zoghbi, and Shannon Bennett on the scene of the Paulsboro, NJ train derailment and hazmat release.




Contact: NTSB Media Relations
Terry Williams
(202) 314-6100