A Canadian National Railway (CN) freight train carrying dangerous goods has derailed near Clair, 200km east of Saskatoon, Canada.
According to media reports, the train caught fire after the accident. The train was on its way to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, from Winnipeg, Manitoba, and has three locomotives with 100 cars, 26 of which were derailed.
CN spokesman Jim Feeny was quoted as saying: "Of the 26 derailed cars, two cars carrying petroleum distillate have spilled and that is the product that caught fire.
"There were four other dangerous goods cars, two of hydrochloric acid, two of caustic soda. They are reported to be intact."
Sources said that two employees were on the train at the time of the derailment, but no injuries were reported.
The local authorities have evacuated residents from the nearby area due to the massive toxic smoke and highway has also been closed in the area.
A local radio station reported a witness saying that the flames were at least 30m (100ft) high.
Saskatoon province officials have deployed a rapid response team and fire safety experts in the scene along with specialised air quality monitoring equipment from the Environment Ministry.
The statement released by the province said: "Environment officials will be monitoring air quality in the area.
"They will be working with CN and the local officials as part of a coordinated response."
Last year, 47 people were killed in a crude oil train crash in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, Canada.
Image: An aerial view of Lac-Mégantic on the day of the derailment. Photo: courtesy of Personalmountains.