On May 28, a garbage truck driven by retired Baltimore County firefighter John Alban Jr. failed to stop at a train crossing in Rosedale and collided with a westbound CSX freight train causing 15 of the train’s 45 cars to derail.
A few minutes later, chemicals aboard the train ignited and then combusted producing an explosion that was felt for miles—and buzzed about on social media, as expletive-filled videos of the blast went viral. Though the incident resulted in no fatalities, several people, including the truck driver, were injured and properties as far away as one mile sustained damage, some of which has not yet been repaired.
Since the accident, CSX has filed a lawsuit against Alban Jr., the National Transportation Safety Board has launched an investigation, and Baltimoreans have largely forgotten about the incident. But for one day in late spring, Rosedale was quite literally the hottest topic in Baltimore.