While the media has declared that Mosier, Oregon "dodged a bullet" regarding the oil train derailment and fire on June 3, the impact to the community of Mosier is real and continuous.
Initial stories of Friends of the Columbia Gorge’s Mosier Voices series
include those of the Reed/Young family, who were separated in the midst of the derailment and experienced its aftermath from different perspectives; Lisa Nelson, who tells of being cut off from the community with flames a few hundred feet from her property; and Jenny Hass, who explains her how her Native American lineage growing up near the Bakken oil fields and her medical training shaped how she views Union Pacific's response to the derailment and the Mosier community.
The reoccurring theme in Mosier Voices is the determination of Mosier citizens to ensure that an oil train derailment like this never occurs again throughout the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area or elsewhere along the oil-by-rail corridor.
“The people of Mosier are still shaken by the derailment and fire that occurred on June 3,” said Mosier Mayor Arlene Burns. “We want people to know, particularly regulators and other decision makers, that the threats of oil train derailments, explosions and fires are real and that the effects on our community last far longer than the flames from burning oil rail cars. Those flames ignited a fire within us that won’t be extinguished until every community is safe from the threat of oil-by-rail.”
Stories from Mosier Voices will continue to be published throughout the summer.
Portrait photography by Vince Ready, Friends of the Columbia Gorge board member. http://lastinglight.photo/
Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF)