SMITHVILLE, Texas (KXAN) — Early Sunday morning, first responders in Smithville reported to train tracks near State Highway 95 where a Union Pacific train containing hazardous cargo derailed — causing what was believed to be hydrochloric acid to start leaking from tanks.
The City of Smithville says the incident happened at around 5 a.m. at SH 95 and Martin Luther King Boulevard. While no one was injured and the tanker cars were empty, the City says they still contained some leftover acid.
Smithville police and volunteer firefighters set up a perimeter to secure the area until Union Pacific Hazmat teams could get to the site, where they plugged the leaking tanker.
The 20-25 families who were evacuated have been given the okay to return to their homes. Union Pacific air quality experts took samples in and around the area and confirmed negative test results for airborne acid, Smithville says.
The Live Oak crossing at FM 2571 has since reopened.
Smithville, located in Bastrop County, is about 45 minutes outside of Austin.