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Trains derail in St. Paul, spill fuel into the Mississippi River

About 3,500 gallons of diesel fuel spilled into the river.

Authorities are working to absorb approximately 3,500 gallons of diesel fuel that spilled into the Mississippi River after two trains derailed in St. Paul. 

Kristen South, a media specialist with Union Pacific, says two of their locomotives derailed on the Hoffman Bridge in St. Paul around 2 a.m. Wednesday. The derailment caused the fuel to spill into the river. 

"Union Pacific Environmental teams responded immediately, deploying boom into the river in four locations," South said. "Boom is an absorbent material designed to collect spilled material. We also are deploying boats with equipment capable of suctioning or collecting pockets of fuel from the water."

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The railroad company is working closely with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and the Environmental Protection Agency to clean the river as fast and safely as possible. 

Barge traffic in the area of the spill is closed until further notice. 

The cause of the derailment is under investigation.

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