Last of Hyndman residents return home

HYNDMAN — The last residents forced from the Bedford County town of Hyndman were allowed to return to their homes Friday, CSX officials announced, ending more than a week away from their houses.

The entire town was evacuated last week after dozens of CSX train cars derailed, sparking a propane fire and damaging nearby buildings.

Fears of a larger fire or explosion kept responders from the scene as residents remained in area hotels.

On Friday, residents of the last 40 closed-off households were allowed back to the site, CSX representatives said in a news release.

Officials had kept several affected blocks of the borough closed this week, even after most of the town was reopened.

CSX representative Rob Doolittle said workers had removed several train cars’ worth of molten sulfur and propane from the scene by truck, and piles of spilled grain had been cleaned by Friday.

Two more carloads of sulfur are set to be removed, he said.

In total, workers have removed 2,000 tons of construction material, rocks and debris from the derailment site, he said.

The company is set to continue operating a community outreach center in Hyndman through at least Sunday.

Representatives have paid out about 1,100 claims for expense reimbursement from those affected, Doolittle said.