Hazardous Chemicals From Train Derailment in East Palestine

Toxic chemicals found in Ohio River

The East Palestine, Ohio experienced a toxic chemical disaster from a train derailment at around 9 p.m. on February 3. People were evacuated and told not to return until authorities said it was safe. But after they attempted to prevent an explosion by burning the hazardous chemicals, it has the possibility of an ecological disaster. Twenty of the rail cars held hazardous chemicals, 10 of them derailed, including 5 that carried vinyl chloride.

“Crews released toxic chemicals into the air from five derailed tanker cars that were in danger of exploding Monday and began burning them after warning residents near the Ohio-Pennsylvania state line to leave immediately or face the possibility of death. Low levels of dangerous chemicals from the ones released in the derailment were detected in the Ohio River downstream of the incident.” WLWT

Low levels. The government always tells Americans that everything is fine when it may not be so (the nothing-to-see-here argument). Authorities attempted to stave off an explosion by doing a “controlled burn” of the hazardous chemicals – such as vinyl chloride and butyl acrylate. Burning vinyl chloride could have released deadly hydrogen chloride and phosgene gas into the atmosphere. But the authorities say the release of such toxins was “minimal.” That must be why so far about 3,500 fish have died over a 7.5 mile area (The Epoch Times) and reporters arrested for covering the story, right? What will be the toll on the humans who live near that derailment? The Ohio River has shown “low levels” of hazardous chemicals. It serves about 10% of the nation’s water.

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Two other train derailments occurred days after the one in East Palestine: Enoree, South Carolina, and Splendora, Texas. In Texas, a train hit a truck and the driver died. Diesel fuel and oil were the only releases from the Texas crash.  The SC derailment held nothing but innocuous household chemicals, according to reports. Whether the administration bothers to care about such things is debatable. Trains use diesel, so this administration may attempt to use these incidents to push for more electric trains (which are impractical for long hauls). Aging rail infrastructure is also a concern.

hazardous chemicals

Screenshot from Enoree derailment

To add to the mess, did you know that a Netflix movie called White Noise was filmed in East Palestine about an eco-disaster from a train derailment? Things that make you go hmmmm.



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Faye Higbee

Faye Higbee is the columnist manager for Uncle Sam's Misguided Children. She has been writing at Conservative Firing Line since 2013 as well. She is also a published author.

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