Tuesday, January 16, 2007

What are we -- Cleveland?

In 1969, the Cuyahoga River caught on fire in Cleveland, Ohio.

Yesterday, the Kentucky River in Estill County, Kentucky, caught on fire. Or maybe it didn't -- emergency personnel disagree.

At issue is whether chemicals carried by four runaway rail cars got into the river and caught fire. Firefighters say it did. Emergency Management officials say it did not. You would think this would be a pretty simple thing to determine, and firefighters seem to be eminently qualified to make that determination. But emergency management officials, who arrived after the fire department, say no chemicals got in the water. Something's fishy here.

It's sort of like the change in stories about how the accident occurred. Kentucky State Police say the four runaway rail cars slammed into an engine parked on the track by CSX Transportation employees as a means of stopping the runaways. CSX says that never happened because it would be contrary to standard operating procedure. Yeah. Right.

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