In the collision with the parked train a single tank car containing 90 tons of chlorine gas
was punctured, releasing a deadly plume of gas 2,500 to the North, 1,000 to the east, 900 to the south, and 1,000 to the west. The town was lucky because there were several tanks of chlorine, as well as sodium hydroxide in the consist.
Nine people died. The engineer and eight town residents. 5,400 people were evacuated within a one mile radious.