There were no injuries when a BNSF coal train derailed in Thedford about 5:30 a.m. Thursday, closing the crossing for residents living on the south side of the community for a few hours. Residents used the railroad access road to get to work if needed, while crews cleaned-up the wreck. There were no injuries.
According to local resident Terri Licking, the last of 13 derailed cars was removed about 4:30 p.m. The dual tracks were idled on the BNSF line from Alliance to Lincoln during the track restoration. Licking says, Thomas County Sheriff Gary Eng was told it would be midnight or early morning Friday before one of the tracks would be repaired and opened.
Many of the residents living close to the tracks did not hear the derailment. One of the residents was told when the cars are full and derail, the sound is deadened versus when the cars are empty and clang more.
Those viewing the clean-up recognized the crew had done this several times before, with all moving like a well-oiled machine.
Although the derailment damaged BNSF property, it was a boost to the local economy. Tegwin Egle, owner of the Cowpoke, the closest restaurant to the tracks, prepared 30 meals for supper.