A train carrying crude oil derailed in the town of Lac-Megantic, Que., early Saturday morning, sending giant flames into the air and prompting a mass evacuation.
The derailment forced hundreds of people from their homes in Lac-Megantic, which is located about 250 kilometres east of Montreal.
A number of the train’s 73 cars exploded, causing a fire that spread to several of buildings in the community.
It was not immediately known if there were any casualties.
The train belongs to Montreal Maine & Atlantic. According to the company’s website, it serves Maine, Vermont, Quebec and New Brunswick and owns more than 800 kilometres of rail tracks.
Lac-Megantic resident Claude Bedard told The Canadian Press that the town has never seen anything like the fire.
“It’s terrible,” he said. “The Metro store, Dollarama, everything that was there is gone.”
Fuel has reportedly spilled into the nearby Chaudiere River, but the exact amount has not yet been determined.
A number of neighbouring communities, including Sherbrooke and Saint-Georges-de-Beauce, were asked to help Lac-Megantic deal with the fire.
With files from The Canadian Press
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