Food processing plants catching fire, chicken farms burning down, trains derailing at a record pace, cows being slaughtered-- individually and by the thousands—and now this: a train car carrying 30 tons of explosive chemicals arrived at its final destination empty, according to radio station KQED. Why not? Totally in keeping with the times.
60,000 pounds of ammonium nitrate, often used to make explosives, was loaded into the train car on April 12th while it was stationed in Cheyenne, Wyoming, along with matches and fertilizers. The ammonium nitrate belonged to Dyno Nobel, a commercial explosives firm.
Inexplicably, after a two-week-long trek to California that included several stops, the railcar previously loaded with the potentially explosive chemicals was found to be…empty.
This prompted Dyno Nobel to subsequently file a brief incident report to the federal National Response Center. The company stated that it suspects the chemicals fell from the train car when moving from the main track to a rail siding. It added that the shipment was transported in pellet form in a covered hopper railcar, one similar to those used to haul coal.
A spokesperson for the company told KQED, “The railcar was sealed when it left the Cheyenne facility, and the seals were still intact when it arrived in Saltdale. The initial assessment is that a leak through the bottom gate on the railcar may have developed in transit.”
No one on the train or in the areas it passed through noticed the supposed massive leak of potentially explosive matériel? There wasn’t a daily—hell, hourly—check on such valuable and potentially volatile cargo? 60,000 pounds of explosive pellets went missing and no one has a clue how, why, or where this happened?
Like many things lately, this strains credulity.
Can we put an end to this insanity and ineptness?
Well, the train has left the station.
Whether we can stop it-- or it arrives at its destination with what it was carrying—is anybody’s guess.
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