City tests water after coal train derails into Roanoke River

SALEM, Va. — A city in southwestern Virginia is testing its drinking water from the Roanoke River after a coal train derailed into the waterway.

The Roanoke Times reports that the train derailed late Friday in Roanoke County near the city of Salem. Roanoke County officials said that a dozen rail cars fell into the river and released about 2,000 tons of coal.

County officials said that Salem has decided to pull water from wells while samples from the river are analyzed. The train was bound for Norfolk, where cargo ships export much of the nation’s coal.

Drone photographs showed that the trestle that carried the rail line over the river has been destroyed.

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