Authorities are evacuating numerous buildings around a train derailment and fire along the James River in downtown Lynchburg, Va. — in a scene eerily reminiscent of last summer's Lac-Mégantic tragedy.
The city of Lynchburg on its website posted that the fire department was on the scene Wednesday afternoon and urged motorists and pedestrians to avoid the area.
No injuries were immediately reported.
Photos and video show several black tanker-like train cars derailed and extensive flames and smoke.
Lynchburg is a city of about 77,000 people in the foothills of Blue Ridge Mountains. It is home to Liberty University and several others and is located about halfway between Baltimore and Charlotte, North Carolina.