Category: Society / November 30, 2012 12:06 PM EST
A rail bridge collapsed over a creek in southern New Jersey, causing a Conrail freight train to derail and spill hazardous chemicals.
Police said on Friday the incident occurred in Paulsboro, New Jersey, at a crossing near the Delaware River, police said. Paulsboro is just over the river from Philadelphia.
According to reports, vinyl chloride, a highly toxic and flammable industrial chemical, was spilling from at least one of the derailed cars.
At least 18 contractors working in the area have complained of respiratory distress, police said, adding that residents in the area had been advised to remain indoors, with their windows shut.
The U.S. Coast Guard said it was responding to the scene and would work with the Department of Environmental Protection to assess the situation.