(Bellville, Texas – June 19, 2011)
A large truck requiring special routing under Texas DOT regulations was struck and heavily damaged by a Burlington Northern Santa Fe train early Sunday morning at 1:10 A.M. after the truck’s load became stuck on BNSF rails at the FM 159 crossing.
The truck was carrying a cylindrical-shaped refinery vessel called a distiller, which was 100 feet long, creating a total vehicular length of 160 feet with 24 axles and 96 wheels, on an approved route from Houston, TX to Sheridan, TX via Hempstead and Bellville. The reason for the night transit of the load was to reduce heat pressure upon the tires of the vehicle.
Attempts were being made to extricate the load from the crossing when the train appeared and smashed into it. As of Wednesday afternoon, crews were still working on removal of the vessel from the accident scene. Traffic through Bellville has been disrupted for the past three days.