Ukraine-bound grain train derailed in Eastern Romania

Eleven freight wagons of a train that had unloaded grain from Ukraine in the port of Constanța derailed on Wednesday in the county of Iași, in Eastern Romania.

There were no casualties, and the train’s 33 wagons were empty, as it was heading back to Ukraine to pick up another shipment of grain. However, as a result of the train derailing, a crucial transport route between Ukraine and Romania’s major port was blocked for four hours.

Since the start of the war, grain from Ukraine has to be shipped through Constanța, as Ukrainian Black Sea ports are blockaded by the Russian navy.

The derailed train was operated by the Ukrainian railways and weighs over 700 tons when empty. Clearing it may take days, during which freight and passenger cars will face delays and speed limitations. The derailed wagons also affected the power line serving the route.

An investigation will establish the causes of the train derailing. Important to note is that Ukrainian trains use a wider gauge than those circulating in Romania and the rest of the EU and the rail wheels need to be changed at the border. This has made land-based transportation of grain a difficult task.

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