Thousands of "Adventist World" magazine subscribers will have to wait a few weeks longer to receive their next issue after a tornado tore through a freight train carrying the magazines to the U.S. West.
The tornado struck the train loaded with 50,000 copies of the Adventist World’s North American Division edition as it passed through the U.S. state of Kansas last weekend, associate publisher Claude Richli said.
No injuries were reported, but the tornado derailed about 100 train cars on the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway, tipping over 34 of them, local police said.
The copies of Adventist World were in the tipped over train cars.
“At the moment they can’t tell me if anything is salvageable,” said Richli, who learned about the incident on Wednesday from the U.S. mailing company that handles the magazine’s shipments.
The tornado with winds of up to 94 miles per hours (151 kilometers per hour) touched down for about two minutes in Lyon County, Kansas, on the night of Saturday, May 16, police said to Twitter.
The incident affects subscribers in the Adventist Church’s Pacific Union, which includes California, Arizona, Nevada, and Hawaii. The train was carrying the May issue of Adventist World, whose shipment had already been delayed because of technical problems, Richli said.
If the copies on the train are spoiled and a new print run is required, subscribers will only receive the magazine in late June, Richli said.
He said it was unclear whether insurance would cover any losses. The cost to print and mail new copies is about US$20,000.
This is the first time in memory that a tornado has interrupted the distribution of Adventist World or its sister magazine, Adventist Review. But challenges outside the control of the editorial team have beset distribution in the past. The shipment of all 355,000 copies of the March issue of Adventist World’sNorth American Division edition was delayed when a cargo truck broke down in Nebraska in February and a second truck subsequently failed to arrive to the pickup point on time, Richli said.
Adventist World has a worldwide circulation of 1.5 million.
Adventist World is printed by Pacific Press in Nampa, Idaho, and shipped to a national distribution center run by the mailing company near Chicago, Illinois. The shipment headed for the Pacific Union was loaded onto the train in Chicago and was making its way West when the tornado hit in Kansas.
The train was also carrying thousands of bundles of other magazines from the mailing company. None of those publications were apparently Adventist.
“It’s remarkable and an interesting way to start the tornado season,” Richli said. “You’ve got to hope that nothing else happens.” (Editor: Andrew McChesney, news editor, Adventist Review)
Read the online version of the May 2015 NAD issue here: