A derailment along the border of Ohio and Pennsylvania is triggering fear across communities and turmoil along major rail corridors. The Wall Street Journal reports that authorities were working February 6 to drain the chemical vinyl chloride from cars of a Norfolk Southern train that derailed near the Ohio village of East Palestine February 3, triggering a fire.
Residents were evacuated from a large area as workers sought to prevent a potentially catastrophic explosion.
Norfolk Southern says shipments are being delayed across an area from Chicago to New York and Kansas City as workers try to clear the scene.
The 50-car derailment is the latest accident to draw attention to the hazardous industrial loads hauled on the tracks. Environmental groups said this and other recent accidents in the region tied to petrochemicals, including a natural gas compressor station fire in December and six other train derailments since 2021, are putting residents at risk.
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