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NEW KENSINGTON, Pa. – C G H FCU was forced to evacuate Jan. 31 so private contractors for Norfolk Southern Railroad could remove from the Allegheny River tanker cars filled with a hazardous chemical that ruptured as a result of the derailment of four tankers and nine other rail cars. According to the Pennsylvania Credit Union Association, the ambulatory care center where the credit union is located also was evacuated. The freight train derailed early in the morning about 13 miles north of what is known as the Point near Pittsburgh. The two tanker cars that ended up in the river were reportedly filled with anhydrous hydrogen fluoride, a caustic concentrated gas that turns into hydrofluoric acid when mixed with water. Hydrogen fluoride can cause burns to the skin and eyes and can be fatal if it’s inhaled or absorbed through the skin. According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, one tanker is almost completely submerged. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that the evacuation order will remain in effect until the “delicate operation” of removing the train cars from the river is completed. C G H FCU President/CEO Karen Janoski said the building where the credit union is housed is still closed, however “staff will be available to answer the phones and take care of necessary business for most of the day.”

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