Hazardous conditions are hindering the search for about 40 people still missing in Quebec where a runaway oil tanker train exploded Saturday. At least five people have been confirmed dead.
Many of the missing are believed to have been drinking at a popular downtown bar when the explosions occurred. Rescuers are still not able to reach that area.
The manager of the bar estimates three workers and about 50 customers were inside when the train derailed and exploded.
Besides the search, crews are trying to contain some 27,000 gallons of light crude that spilled from the tank cars being pulled by the train.
How would Jacksonville respond to such a disaster? It's a tragedy too real for Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Chief Martin Senterfitt.
"Our hearts go out to them, but it's one of those things that can happen in a modern industrial world," he said.
It turns out the train in Quebec was carrying crude oil, and that's why the fire was so catastrophic. CSX officials said hazardous chemicals like petroleum do make their way onto Jacksonville's train tracks. Safely maneuvering those items is not something CSX take lightly.
CSX says those items are not to be shipped unless they're in protective containers. Those containers must be strong enough to withstand the force of accidents or derailments.
Also the company offers free training for emergency responders in that situation.
Although rare in the city, derailments have happened. Senterfitt says when they do, the first thing is to get everyone away from any fires. From there, they take control.
"Make sure that the fire is not growing," Senterfitt said. "And so, of course, we come in, we start putting a perimeter around it at a safe distance and we slowly work in. So first is life safety, second is stabilize, make sure it's not going to get worse, and then we extinguish."
Senterfitt also said dealing with these types of fires is no easy feat.
"The chemical suits and all that you have to wear are extrememly hot. So the average firefighter can only last about 20 minutes or so before he has to go into rehab," Senterfitt said.
He also said no matter what, there's never too much preparation. The goal is to be as safe as possible.