A total of 14 Norfolk Southern cars are said to have derailed. Crews plan to work through the night to re-rail the cars.
Robbie Dixon was hard at work on a utility pole when his day took an unexpected turn for the worse.
Dixon says, "We just saw rails and cars being thrown everywhere and some railroad ties being tossed back and forth."
Dixon says he had a feeling something was wrong when he noticed smoke coming from the wheels of the approaching train.
Robbie says, "Got to looking closer and it looked like one of the wheels had locked up, and the train, next thing when it made the crossing right here, the train derailed, and from their it was chaos."
Officials say it could have been a lot worse. The cars were carrying only soybeans instead of chemicals, like chlorine, which typically come through this area. They also point out the derailment did not come with warning.
Jim Fielding, Lowndes County Fire Chief, says, "We've talked to the conductor a little bit and he stated to me that he had been given a track warning signal about two miles up the road."
Officials say the train was traveling from Macon to Valdosta at about 50 miles an hour. They say the official cause of the derailment is still unclear at this time.
Train officials say they will continue working into the night to reopen the rail line, but they say track repairs will need to be made, which could take several days.