A freight train carrying sulphuric acid has derailed in north Queensland. Image: Queensland Police Service
A freight train carrying sulphuric acid has derailed in north Queensland. Image: Queensland Police Service

Derailed freight train had 800,000 litres of acid

A FREIGHT train which derailed in north Queensland about 20kms east of Julia Creek was carrying more than 800,000 litres of sulphuric acid, police revealed on Tuesday.

Updated information indicates the train was transporting approximately 819,000 litres of the acid when it derailed on December 27. Initial estimates had been 200,000 litres.

An emergency declaration and two kilometre exclusion zone remains in place under the Public Safety Preservation Act to assist emergency services manage the scene, which includes the construction of a safe structure to allow salvage crews access to the crash site.

Assessments to date indicate that one of the carriages has likely ruptured and it is possible that up to 31,500 litres of acid has leaked out.

No other ruptured carriages have been identified as leaking at this stage.

Initial testing by Department of Environment and Heritage Protection to date in the area of the incident, indicates that the nearby Horse Creek waterway has not been adversely affected by any leakage.

It is expected authorities will have teams physically working on site later on Tuesday dependent on weather.

The Flinders Highway remains closed in both directions between Julia Creek and Richmond as a result of flooding and the exclusion zone.

It is anticipated that the exclusion zone will be in place for least another 48hrs.



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