July 10 - The head of the company whose train exploded devastating a small Quebec town says calamity may be due to crucial hand brakes not set properly. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
The head of the company whose oil-tanker train exploded and devastated a small Quebec town faced ire from residents as he offered his apologies. Sixty people are either dead or missing after a runaway train smashed into the center of the historic lakeside town and exploded early on Saturday morning. Montreal Maine and Atlantic Railways Chairman Ed Burkhardt says he is sorry. (SOUNDBITE) (English) MONTREAL, MAINE & ATLANTIC CHAIRMAN ED BURKHARDT SAYING: "I understand the extreme anger. And, beyond that we will do what we canto address the issues here. We can't roll back time." He says, he does not suspect sabotage and that the calamity may well have resulted from crucial hand brake not being set properly. (SOUNDBITE) (English) MONTREAL, MAINE & ATLANTIC CHAIRMAN ED BURKHARDT SAYING: "We think he applied some handbrakes., but the question is did he apply enough of them. He told us he applied 11 handbrakes. And our general feeling is now, that that is not true." The incident forced about 2,000 people, roughly a third of the town to leave their homes and seek shelter in local schools or with friends and family.