Infuriating Ohio Train Update: Officials Buried Critical Health Risks Until After Residents Returned
The derailment of a train carrying hazardous chemicals in Ohio may be even more dangerous than the public has been told.
State officials initially focused on the release of vinyl chloride after 50 cars of a Norfolk Southern Railroad train derailed in East Palestine, Ohio, on Feb. 3, according to ABC News.
Phosgene and hydrogen chloride were also released from the train derailment, hazardous substances that led authorities to order evacuations within one mile of the crash site.
Authorities arranged for the blasting of some affected train cars — a tactic to allow for a controlled burn of the substances.
🚨#BREAKING: Large Explosion at the site of the train derailment
Officials just did a Controlled explosion that occurred of the train derailment extremely toxic smoke is being released into the air trapping it 3,000 feet up new evacuation zones ordered pic.twitter.com/khKWRQTAV9
— R A W S A L E R T S (@rawsalerts) February 7, 2023
These weren’t the only chemicals that were released in the smoking blaze that followed the accident.
A train manifest created by Norfolk Southern Railroad shows cargo containing more hazardous chemicals.
Ethylhexyl acrylate, isobutylene and ethylene glycol monobutyl ether were also released in the accident, according to the manifest acquired by ABC News.
These three substances can cause adverse health effects.
Ethylhexyl acrylate is known to cause eye and skin burning, isobutylene can cause dizziness and drowsiness, and ethylene glycol monobutyl can induce nervous system depression, headaches and vomiting, according to Centers for Disease Control data reviewed by ABC.
The train’s load of the additional chemicals is being made known after evacuation orders for East Palestine residents and some Pennsylvanians were rescinded last week, according to the New York Post.
Authorities rescinded the evacuation orders after testing air and soil samples for contamination.
Aerial footage of the aftermath of the accident depicts a scene wrought with destruction.
Aerial view of the aftermath in East Palestine, Ohio.
On February 3rd, a train containing hazardous chemicals derailed in this village. https://t.co/mS64RWFyXE pic.twitter.com/tFg3TV0Z4q
— Lincoln Jay (@lincolnmjay) February 14, 2023
The Environmental Protection Agency said it couldn’t detect dangerous levels of toxins in the air on Monday, according to ABC.
EPA’s top priority is the health and safety of all communities. Since the initial train derailment in East Palestine, Ohio, we have had 6 staff and 16 contractors on the ground to assist with air monitoring actions.
— EPA Great Lakes (@EPAGreatLakes) February 14, 2023
The federal agency assessed 291 homes for potential exposure to vinyl chloride and hydrogen chloride.
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