West Point residents make their way back into homes after train derailment
Trying to wash dishes while evacuated.
The site of the train derailment.
WEST POINT, KY (WAVE)- Life in the small town of West Point is getting back to normal, if you can call it that.
"It's going to take a little bit to just get back to the pace of everyday life," said Laura Schermerhorn, of West Point, whose family was evacuated.
Schermerhorn and her family are just one of the many families who are moving back into their homes after a P&L train derailed not far from her home as it was carrying hazardous chemicals. Her family was in the 1.2 mile evacuation zone. She said officials knocked on her door and they had 30 minutes to pack up and leave. She didn't even have time to finish making her children's lunches.
"It's been total chaos since, trying to take care of seven people in other people's households," she said.
Her family was staying with her mother.
"You're homesick you want your own bed back, for real," said Schermerhorn.
Then they moved to a hotel for two days in two rooms. The railroad gave her and many others vouchers for the rooms and reimbursed her for some expenses.
"Such a small community that you kind of feel like you're gonna get forgotten," she said. "But, they took care of us very well and I appreciate it so much."
Now, they are home for the first time in a week. But there's a lot of work to be done.
"It feels good," she said with a smile. "But it's gonna be a big process trying to get everything to the way we're used to living."
Not to mention the dishes and a mountain of laundry needing to be put away, washed and folded. Plus a new concern.
"I'm worried about the water situation," she said.
The Mayor Greg Fischer said the water is EPA tested and is safe. Schermerhorn also said she and her family now suffer from headaches. But she's at least glad to be almost rid of this headache of the train derailment. The Mayor also said after Dixie Highway is opened, representatives from the railroad will be around for a number of weeks to help residents with things like claims.
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725 S. Floyd Street
Louisville, KY 40203