Three workers were severely burned in a fire that erupted Wednesday while contractors were removing debris from a train derailment in southwest Louisville, officials said. The workers were critically injured with second- and third-degree burns covering 90 percent of their bodies, said Doug Hamilton, director of the Louisville Emergency Management Agency.
Two others were injured but refused to be transported to the hospital.
Hamilton said the workers were wearing respirators and they were using a blow torch, but he wasn't sure why.
They work for R. J. Corman, one of the contractors helping to clean up the derailment, according to The Courier-Journal.
Firefighters were using water and foam to try to put out the blaze.
Workers on Wednesday had been planning to move two rail cars containing potentially deadly hydrogen fluoride that were part of a derailment Monday.
A Paducah & Louisville Railway train carrying hazardous chemicals derailed just after 6 a.m. EDT Monday near Dixie Highway. A leak of a potentially explosive material was contained after the derailment, but crews have been working to put the railroad cars back on the track or remove them and the highway remained closed.