Lucy Quitin lives in Laval, just meters from the train track. She says she hears trains go by every night, but this time was totally different.

"It was very noisy and everything was shaking-- the bell kept ringing on the train, like ringing and ringing -- so it was pretty scary," Quitin explained.

A large emergency operation began Thursday night between Laval and Terrebonne after a freight train derailed aroound 9 p.m. Thursday night. 

Eight railcars went off the tracks and half of them plunged into the Mille Iles river near the Sophie-Masson Bridge on Montée Masson.

Terrebonne firefighters said that nobody was injured in the crash, although the bridge was damaged.

The rail cars, which are normally used to carry cement, were empty.

The 107 car-long train is operated by Quebec-Gatineau railway, and was heading south. .

Workers from the Ministry of the Environment went to the scene overnight to ensure that public safety is not at risk as the wreckage is cleared.

By 2 p.m. Friday three of the eight wagons had been removed, and residents gathered to watch the workers remove the train from its precarious position. 

"It could have been a lot worse," one spectator told CTV Montreal. The trains normally carry hazardous material-- one of the main tracks in Quebec that transports it, he added. 

Laval Mayor Marc Demers said the city is working on new legislation to help secure the track. 

"in the future, they are going to be built differently, and if houses have to build there, there is a distance they have to be from the railway, but we have to live with what has been done what's already there," Demers said.

Under these new rules, the existing houses would be considered too close to the railway. Until the investigation is complete, there will be no changes.

In the meantime, those who live nearby expressed thankfulness that the wreck wasn't worse.