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EPA Orders Norfolk Southern to Clean Up Contaminated Water and Soil from Ohio Derailment

HeadlineFeb 22, 2023

The Environmental Protection Agency has ordered Norfolk Southern to clean up the contamination from its derailment in East Palestine, Ohio, earlier this month, which led to a massive fire and the release of toxic chemicals. This is EPA head Michael Regan speaking from East Palestine.

Michael Regan: “If the company fails to complete any action ordered by EPA, the agency will immediately step in, conduct the work ourselves, and then force Norfolk Southern to pay triple in cost.”

Ohio Republican Governor Mike DeWine also spoke at Tuesday’s press conference and said it was “fundamentally wrong” that trains carrying toxic chemicals are not required to notify authorities. An investigation by local ABC affiliate WSYX revealed Norfolk Southern donated $29,000 to Governor DeWine since 2018, including $10,000 just last month for his inauguration. The train company gave nearly $100,000 to Ohio candidates over the past six years and extensively lobbied DeWine and other politicians.

Railroad Workers United and others are calling for the nationalization of the U.S. rail system in the wake of the East Palestine disaster.

Meanwhile, a Union Pacific coal-carrying train derailed in Gothenburg, Nebraska, early Tuesday. It’s the second such accident this week for Union Pacific trains after another derailment Monday in Riverbank, California. The company said no hazardous materials were involved in either instance.

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