Home Illinois Ohio sues Norfolk Southern over toxic train derailment – Chicago Tribune

Ohio sues Norfolk Southern over toxic train derailment – Chicago Tribune


Ohio is suing Norfolk Southern Railroad to make sure it pays for cleanup costs and environmental damage caused by a train derailment on the Ohio-Pennsylvania border last month, the state’s attorney general said Tuesday.

The federal lawsuit also aims to force the company to pay for future years of groundwater and soil monitoring and economic losses in the village of East Palestine and surrounding areas, Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost said.

“The effects of this preventable accident will reverberate throughout Ohio for years to come,” Yost said.

No one was injured in the February 3 derailment, but half of East Palestine’s approximately 5,000 residents were forced to evacuate for several days when emergency responders deliberately burned toxic chemicals in some of the derailed cars to prevent an uncontrolled explosion in as a result of which the residents were left with health problems. Government officials say tests conducted over the past month have not found dangerous levels of chemicals in the air or water in the area.

Norfolk Southern CEO Alan Shaw apologized to Congress last week for the impact the derailment has had on East Palestine and surrounding communities, but he made no specific commitment to pay for the long-term health and economic damage.

The railroad has pledged more than $20 million so far to help the Ohio community recover, and announced several voluntary safety upgrades. A message seeking comment on the lawsuit was left with Norfolk Southern.

Many in East Palestine still resent the railroad and worry about what will happen to the village.

These fears include concerns about their long-term health, home values ​​and the economic future of local businesses.


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