Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Ltd, the railway involved in last month’s deadly derailment and explosion in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, filed for bankruptcy protection on Wednesday, saying the move would enable the company to preserve the value of its assets.

The railway said it lost much of its freight business following the July 6 disaster, which killed 47 people and devastated the town of Lac-Megantic. A Chicago law firm has begun filing lawsuits in Illinois on behalf of crash victims. Illinois is home to one of the railroad’s parent companies.  Another class action suit has been filed in Canada.

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