Luck was in abundance on Friday in Mosier, Oregon where the latest Bakken oil train derailed and erupted into flames near a 50-home residential area and a school.
As Mosier Fire Chief Jim Appleton said, “Mosier really dodged a bullet in the last 24 hours.”
“I hope that this becomes death knell for this mode of shipping this cargo. I think it’s insane,” Appleton said. “I’ve been very hesitant to take a side up to now, but with this incident, and with all due respect to the wonderful people that I’ve met at Union Pacific, shareholder value doesn’t outweigh the lives and happiness of our community.”
It's a familiar story to those following the Bakken oil “bomb train” saga — luck.
“If I had been there another second, it’d probably have killed me,” Bounds said. “Glass was flying everywhere behind me. The walls were caving in. I hadn’t run like that in years.”
That was Morris Bounds describing to The Spokesman Review how he barely escaped the derailing Bakken oil train that destroyed his home in Mount Carbon, West Virginia in February 2015. He literally saw the train derailing and ran out his front door as the train wiped out his house behind him.
You don’t get much luckier than Morris Bounds. Or his wife, who happened to be in the hospital that day instead of at home.
Later that year when another Bakken oil train derailed in a residential neighborhood in Watertown, Wisconsin but did not ignite, Sarah Feinberg, the head of the Federal Railroad Administration, declared, “We feel we got really lucky.”