MINOT, N.D. (AP) -- A train derailed west of this North Dakota city early Friday, sending a cloud of anhydrous ammonia gas over the area, killing one resident and sending dozens more to the hospital.
"It was like something just grabbed your lungs," said state Sen. Randy Schobinger, who lives about 500 feet from the tracks.
Ten people were in the intensive care unit at Trinity Hospital Friday morning, and more than 35 others had gone to the hospital for treatment, Ward County Sheriff Vern Erck said.
Some residents were forced to evacuate, and dozens were being given oxygen or having their eyes flushed with water at temporary public shelters.
Authorities did not immediately identify the man who died. Erck said he was found outside his home, close to the wreck.
The accident happened at about 1:40 a.m., when about 20 cars of a 112-car Canadian Pacific Railway train derailed, Gov. John Hoeven said.
"A couple of them have rolled away from the track, and there's just a small plume coming out of one of the cars," Hoeven said. He was not sure how many of the cars held anhydrous ammonia, a fertilizer that can burn the nose and throat.
The cause of the derailment was not immediately known. Authorities were working to build a road to the crash site about a mile west of Minot, Hoeven said.
Minot, population 36,000, is about 100 miles north of Bismarck.
State emergency manager Doug Friez said some people were evacuated, but did not say how many. The derailment also knocked out power to parts of Minot and neighboring Burlington, railway spokeswoman Laura Baenen said.
Those who were not evacuated were being told to stay in their homes, shut off their furnaces and place damp cloths over entrances to their homes if necessary, Hoeven said.
Authorities did not say how long the cloud of anhydrous ammonia might be over the city.
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