Arizona freight train derails sparking huge fire

Part of the bridge over Tempe Beach Park has collapsed. Credit: Tempe Police

A freight train has derailed in Tempe, Arizona sparking a huge fire on Wednesday.

There were several agencies including police and firefighters on the scene as thick smoke filled the air and flights from nearby Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport were diverted.

The incident happened at around 06:30am local time Credit: Lydia Guzman

Tempe Police Chief Sylvia Moir tweeted that there were "no known injuries and warned people to "stay away" from the area.

Pictures from the scene on Wednesday morning (local time) show that part of the bridge over Tempe Beach Park has collapsed.

Tempe police tweeted that they along with Tempe Fire "are on scene of a train derailment and large fire over Tempe Town Lake."

Tempe police warned people to avoid the area. Credit: Vikki Colvin

Several roads in the area were also restricted near Tempe Town Lake and west of downtown Tempe.

Tempe police warned people to "please avoid the area."

Valley Metro tweeted: "Service Alert-Update: Due to a heavy rail fire in Tempe, Valley Metro is terminating service eastbound at 38th St/Wash and Smith Martin/Apache Blvd in Tempe. Buses are being assembled to transport passengers around the incident."

The Salt River Union Pacific Railroad Bridge was built in 1912 and survived as floods destroyed the previous three truss bridges constructed at the same location.

The bridge is normally used by cargo trains.