DMVM train cleanup in progress
By Michael Johnson, Editor
Train cleanup and rail reconstruction is underway at the site of the recent derailment south of Washburn. One man was killed and another received minor injuries after two Dakota Missouri Valley and Western Railroad engines derailed at the site about 2 miles south of Washburn at about 11:30 a.m. March 25. The man who was killed was identified as Jeff Heitzmann, 46, of Mandan. Authorities believe the embankment along Turtle Creek flowing into the Missouri River gave way leaving no support beneath a short stretch of the tracks. The train was northbound from Bismarck when the two lead engines flipped and rolled on top of each other towards the creek below. A third engine hung on the edge of derailment until railroad crews could hook up another engine and pull the cars and three remaining engines south from the edge at about 2:30 p.m. The first employee was taken by ambulance to Bismarck for minor injuries after reaching the home of Jackie and Richard Olson, which was just up the hill from the scene of the accident. The executive vice president for DMVW, Jeff Wood, released the news that Heitzmann was found dead at about 4 p.m.