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Train Derailments Inspire Safety Discussion - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Train Derailments Inspire Safety Discussion

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  • Leaders Meeting Saturday About Rail Safety

    Leaders Meeting Saturday About Rail Safety

    North Dakota political leaders are holding a meeting in Casselton Saturday to give an update on what's being done to prevent another train crash and derailment. U.S. Senators John Hoeven and Heidi Heitkamp
    North Dakota political leaders are holding a meeting in Casselton Saturday to give an update on what's being done to prevent another train crash and derailment.

Oil-transporting train derailments like that of Casselton, North Dakota inspired the nation's major freight railroads, transportation and energy leaders to meet Jan. 16 to discuss safely transporting hazardous materials.
     
Tomorrow, a similar meeting will take place at Fargo City Hall to discuss if these trains should be traveling through populated areas like downtown Fargo and Moorhead and how they can do it more safely.

"What if something would happen in downtown Fargo or as close as the corner of Main and Broadway?" says Wimmer's Diamonds Co-Owner Brad Wimmer.

Wimmer's Diamonds has been just a few hundred feet from the tracks since 1919, but oil train derailment consideration is something new.

"I think we're all preparing plans: What would we do? What would happen- evacuation? All those other things," he says.

 Brad Wimmer not only owns Wimmer's Diamonds with his brother, but is also a Fargo City Commissioner. He'll be part of a meeting tomorrow on the topic with state and federal representation.    

"We just need to come together. We need to get some discussion and dialogue going and then come up with a pretty firm plan on what happens," he says.

Antiques On Broadway does business on the other side of the tracks, just feet away from the rails. 

"If it ever happened here," says Employee Karen Schulz, "you'd find us in Minot, pieces of us in Minot," she says.

As the trains shake the thousands of antiques and collectibles, employees say they hope conversation about train speed is on the agenda.

"This last train that just went by, was just booking it. It's kind of scary. It's kind of nerve-wracking."

Wimmer says all ideas will be thrown out on the table at tomorrow's meeting, including thoughts of re-routing trains around the area.

The meeting is Jan. 18 at 10 a.m. at Fargo City Hall. We'll be there and have more tomorrow on Valley News Live.

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