The fifth and final vinyl-chloride train car was removed from the East Jefferson Street Bridge derailment site in Paulsboro, officials said Sunday.

Cleanup is progressing steadily under the direction of five agencies working together as a "unified command," Coast Guard spokesman Nick Ameen said.

Ameen said the railcars were being secured on a barge in Mantua Creek. The bridge must now undergo repairs and inspection before returning to operation.

"Once the bridge is deemed safe, that's when they'll be rewheeling the cars on the track," he said.

The unified command comprises the Coast Guard, Conrail, the Borough of Paulsboro, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, and the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management. Ameen said it was common for several agencies to come together in a major emergency with a united command structure.

Among the tasks still under way are track repairs and underwater and surface inspections. Preparation for restoring train service will continue during the next two days.

The Federal Railroad Administration has the final say over the safety of the bridge before any trains run.

The authority will inspect the track and locking mechanism to determine whether they meet requirements for the resumption of train operations, the command said in a statement.

After passing the federal inspection, the bridge will be put back in service and inspectors will visually monitor bridge operations for 24 hours, according to the statement.

The cars derailed on the Mantua Creek bridge on Nov. 30. Most of the 700 residents who were evacuated have returned home. There were no reports of serious injuries.

Contact Mark Fazlollah at 215-854-5831 or mfazlollah@phillynews.com.