Officials in Montana are responding to a train derailment in the Yellowstone River.
The Yellowstone County Sheriff’s Office wrote on Facebook on Saturday morning that multiple tanker cars were “damaged and leaking petroleum products near the Yellowstone River.”
Later reports from other agencies in addition to photos from the derailment indicate that the train had crashed into the Yellowstone River when a bridge collapsed early Saturday morning.
The Stillwater County Disaster and Emergency Services said on Facebook that “multiple” rail cars were in the river, but the cause of the derailment had not yet been determined. The department said that the derailment occurred around 6 a.m. local time.
The department said that multiple agencies, including federal organizations, were responding to the collapse.
The sheriff’s office first said that multiple tanker cars were “damaged and leaking petroleum products near the Yellowstone River.” Later in the morning, a local newspaper shared an update on Facebook. The sheriff’s office shared the update, which said that eight rail cars were involved but none contained oil. Instead, the cars contained “asphalt and a second substance that officials are working to confirm.” Both substances were described as slow-moving.
The area’s Fish, Wildlife and Parks department said the river would be closed and asked boaters to avoid the area.
The public works department for the city of Billings, Montana, wrote on Facebook that “there is potential for undesired material being discharged into the Yellowstone.” The river borders Billings.
The city said water intake into the metro area would be shut down “for the time it takes for any material to pass by Billings.” The shut down is expected to be brief and will not impact water supplies, the department said.
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.