Burlington Northern Railroad hopes to open its line at Bellingham by noon Thursday after it was closed when 27 cars of a southbound freight train derailed about four miles north of here.
A railroad spokesman said there is a possibility of detouring some train traffic around the accident site through Sumas, Wash., before Thursday.
Five derailed cars contained hazardous substances, two each of propane and liquefied carbon dioxide and one of sulfur, but none of those materials leaked, BN spokesman Gus Melonas said Tuesday.
No injuries were reported. The cars jumped the tracks Monday night, and the cause is undetermined, Melonas said.
He said workers were putting cars back on the tracks Tuesday, and it might be necessary to evacuate a halfmile area when two of the cars with hazardous materials are righted. He said they were on their sides.
Melonas said the cars were not punctured and the evacuation would be only precautionary.
The tracks normally are used by 15 freight trains and one Amtrak passenger train a day, Melonas said. The Amtrak run is a round trip from Seattle to Vancouver, British Columbia.
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