train crash in ohio
A big fireball and billowing smoke rose into the sky when officials released and burned toxic chemicals from the wreckage of a derailed train in an Ohio village

On February 3rd, a train loaded to the top with chemicals leaves Illinois for Pennsylvania, but when it is in Ohio there is a mechanical failure, at the moment they are still investigating it.

Days after crews released and burned toxic chemicals carried by the wrecked train in Ohio, residents remain concerned about toxic substances that could linger in their evacuated neighborhoods.

About 50 cars, including 10 carrying hazardous materials, derailed in a fiery crash in eastern Palestine, according to rail operator Norfolk Southern and the National Transportation Safety Board.

Vinyl chloride was slowly released into the air from five of those cars before crews ignited it to dispose of the highly flammable toxic chemicals in a controlled environment, creating a plume of dark smoke.

Residents in the immediate area there and nearby Pennsylvania were evacuated in advance because of health risks from the fumes as the impact of the vinyl chloride burning is cause for concern.

 “We know everybody’s frustrated. Everybody wants to be in their homes after 9 days of the disaster. We did the best we can,” said Mayor Trent Conaway. “The number one goal is public safety, and we accomplished that. Nobody was injured, nobody died.”

He credited the village’s part-time firefighters and their quick response to the derailment for saving the town. The fire from the chemical release is no longer burning, and crews have started removing some of the wreckage.

Evacuated residents can return to the Ohio village where crews burned toxic chemicals after a train derailed five days ago near the Pennsylvania state line now that monitors show no dangerous levels in the air, authorities said

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine said some residents may want to wait until their homes are checked. Rail operator Norfolk Southern Railway said it would provide testing and continue to operate its family assistance center “for the foreseeable future.”

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The governor said the railroad will have to pay for the cleanup and make sure something like this doesn’t happen again. “The burden is upon them is to assure the public that what they do every day is safe,” DeWine said.

At least one lawsuit has been filed over the derailment. An East Palestine business owner and two other residents sued Norfolk Southern in federal court, alleging negligence by the company and exposure to toxic substances as a result. They’re seeking to make it a class-action case for residents and businesses in the evacuated area and people who were physically harmed because of spilled chemicals at the site.