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Bloomberg: Train Hits Van at Houston Shell Refinery; Dozen Hurt (Update1)

By Barbara Powell

Jan. 30 (Bloomberg) — A lone locomotive struck a van carrying Shell Oil Co. contract employees at a refinery near Houston, causing minor injuries to about a dozen workers.

The accident in Deer Park, Texas, occurred about 7:40 a.m on Shell property, company spokeswoman Emily Oberton said. As many as a dozen workers were taken to five hospitals and 20 more were evaluated at the scene by emergency medical personnel, she said.

The Port Terminal Railroad Association reported that a locomotive traveling at 10 miles per hour struck the van after it failed to stop at a railroad crossing, said Felicia Griffin, a spokeswoman for the Port of Houston Authority. There was no rail arm at the at-grade crossing, but there were stop signs, the railroad association said in a statement.

The 1,500-acre facility operated by Shell, the U.S. unit of Royal Dutch Shell Plc, the world’s second-largest oil company, includes the refinery and a chemical plant. It has about 1,700 workers, not including contractors.

The bus was carrying 30 to 40 contractors to a work site, Oberton said. The railroad association is a separate entity from the Port of Houston Authority. It was established in 1924 when railroads operating in Houston agreed to operate the tracks owned by the Port Authority as an extension of their railroads.

To contact the reporter on this story: Barbara Powell in Dallas at [email protected] .
Last Updated: January 30, 2007 14:01 EST

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