On February 3rd, 2023 at about 9 PM, a train from the Norfolk Southern company derailed with 38 cars attached in East Palestine, Ohio causing an ecological disaster in its wake. The train was carrying a chemical called Vinyl Chloride which is a chemical used in the creation of some types of plastic and can cause cancer cells to grow in high concentration and exposure.
According to researchers, this ecological disaster was entirely preventable. The incident happened when a peculiarly hot axel sparked a small fire that set alight some of the chemicals in one car, and when the train passed by 2 detectors, they could not detect any anomalies because the fire was not seeping with heat and burning the car yet. Finally, a 3rd detector sensed the anomaly, but it was far too late to save the train.
The axel broke and the train derailed, spilling barrel after barrel of Vinyl Chloride. People around the site of the derailment have been reporting sickness and nausea as a side effect of the chemicals. Firefighters were on the scene fighting the fire but now weeks later, the 2 million gallons of firefighting water, that are possibly contaminated, are being transported to Texas after the 2nd derailment by the Norfolk Southern Company. The Norfolk Southern Company is trying to strengthen safety measures and protocols to avoid these incidents happening again.
Overall it was a crazy corporate mess for Norfolk Southern, with lots of costs in damages and healthcare, and some lawsuits sprinkled in, along with minor ecological disaster contaminating the soil, water, and air, with some oil spilling into Michigan.