Union Pacific said the liquid is typically used as a solvent. The cars were at the company’s train yard.
A Union Pacific spokeswoman told the Belleville News-Democrat there have been no injuries.
Dupo Mayor Jerry Wilson said a nearby high school and a grade school were evacuated, along with the Adams neighborhood.
“Ameren will be cutting power to the East Carondelet community soon. This is due to high tension lines over the fire,” the St. Clair County Emergency Management Agency said in a Facebook post.