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Runaway Canadian Oil Train Derails, Explodes

In Canada, there are fears of further casualties after a runaway, driverless train carrying crude oil derailed and exploded in eastern Quebec, destroying buildings in a town center and killing at least one person.

The disaster occurred early on July 7, when the train, with more than 70 cars, went off the tracks in the town of Lac-Megantic, triggering a series of blasts and sending up fireballs.

Police have confirmed that at least one person was killed.

"What has happened is shocking and truly devastating," Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced. "My thoughts and prayers and those of all Canadians are with the people of Lac-Megantic as they deal with this disaster in their community. Tragically, it is clear there has been loss of life, but we still do not know how extensive that is. I offer my heartfelt condolences to all of the families and friends of the victims."

Officials said the train had been parked up the hill from the town and the driver had set the brakes.

It was not immediately clear how the train began moving toward the town.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AP