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Associated Press
The Norfolk Southern intermodal train, hauling freight containers, trailers, or both, derailed in Williams County. The Blade | Lori King

Freight train derails in Ohio during strong storm; no hazardous spills

As a strong storm swept through the area, a freight train derailed Wednesday afternoon in rural Williams County, Ohio, disrupting Amtrak passenger service.

Ten cars of the train jumped the tracks about 1:30 p.m., knocking 31 shipping containers to the ground, Norfolk Southern spokesman David Pidgeon said.

The derailment happened during a storm that brought down a number of trees and power lines, the National Weather Service said. But what caused the train to leave the tracks was still under investigation, Pidgeon said.

The train derailed between the towns of Melbern and Edgerton, a Williams County emergency dispatcher said.

The two Norfolk Southern workers on the 50-car train were not hurt, and no hazardous material spilled, Pidgeon said. The train originated in Harrisburg, Pa., and was destined for St. Louis, he said.

Wednesday evening, Norfolk Southern crews were working to clear the track, a mainline between Toledo and Chicago. It was unclear when the line would reopen, Pidgeon said.

Meanwhile, Amtrak made plans to have chartered buses transport rail passengers between Chicago and Toledo to avoid the wreck, Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari said. Passengers were encouraged to call 800-872-7245 for updates.

Anne Gregory of The Journal Gazette contributed to this story.