Emergency Declared With Hundreds Unable To Return Home After Louisiana Freight Train Derailment

Source: Henry Austin / NBC News

With hundreds of people unable to return to their homes Monday, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal declared a state of emergency as specialists continued to assess the wreckage of a derailed freight train that was leaking chemicals.

More than 100 homes were evacuated after the 78-car Union Pacific locomotive came off the tracks about 3:30 p.m. (4:30 p.m. ET) Sunday near Lawtell, about 60 miles west of Baton Rouge.

Two of the 23 cars that derailed began leaking chemicals, including the substance sodium hydroxide, which can cause injuries if it touches the skin or even death if it is inhaled.

Another car was emitting lube oil, while a fourth containing vinyl chloride was damaged but not leaking.

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