Deadly Train Collision Near Houston

9-15-05 - A worker died early Thursday when one Union Pacific train hit another, derailing both and causing a fuel spill, a company spokesman said.

Hundreds of area residents were evacuated before dawn, as a precaution, several media organizations reported.

One Union Pacific train with two locomotives and 10 rail cars struck another UP train with two locomotives and three rail cars at 12:15 a.m. Thursday, about 60 miles northeast of Houston, said Mark Davis, spokesman for Union Pacific.

The first train was traveling on a straight track from Pine Bluff, Ark., to Houston when its locomotive struck the second train.

The second train was stopped on the north end of a side track, but its locomotive was on the straight track. The first train had the right of way, Davis said.

Diesel fuel was leaking from the locomotives, he said.

The employee who died was on the second train. The worker's name was not immediately released.

The second train services businesses in the Houston area. Union Pacific owns the tracks.

National Transportation Safety Board, Federal Railroad Administration and Union Pacific investigators were en route to the scene.