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The Lac-Megantic, Quebec, derailment disaster that killed 47 people occurred after a single engineer parked his train for the night on a main line uphill from Lac-Megantic. The train of oil tankers carrying Bakken started rolling and eventually derailed, exploding into balls of fire and flattening the center of the town.

Explosive questions: Study of oil from deadly Quebec derailment points to Bakken crude's volatility

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By Amy Dalrymple / The Forum

WILLISTON, N.D. – Last July 6, a train carrying crude oil from North Dakota to a refinery in eastern Canada was left parked on a hillside in Quebec. It rolled backward down the hill, derailing and crashing into a small town, with railcars bursting into flames, killing 47 people.

While investigators pointed early on to the train’s brakes, the violent explosions prompted Canadian officials to question the volatility of the Bakken crude.

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Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers Hubbard County, courts and breaking news.

(218) 732-3364
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