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Evacuees in Acid Spill Go Home

September 18, 2002|Associated Press

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The last of nearly 3,000 residents forced to evacuate because of sulfuric acid leaking from a derailed freight train were allowed to return home Tuesday morning, setting off a dispute between county officials and the federal Environmental Protection Agency.

About half of the residents, who lived in eight of about 20 subdivisions farthest from the accident scene, went home on Monday night. A county official allowed the rest to return about 6 a.m. Tuesday.

A 141-car Norfolk Southern train bound for Birmingham, Ala., derailed Sunday morning. A tanker car carrying 10,600 gallons of sulfuric acid leaked noxious vapor.

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