The EPA has reportedly directed Norfolk Southern, the business at the heart of the train crash in East Palestine, Ohio, to supervise the cleanup of the dangerous chemicals that leaked out into the local environment after the crash.
Local and state officials had earlier evacuated all inhabitants within one mile of the February 3rd derailment and began a controlled burn of industrial chemicals on the car to reduce the possibility of an explosion, which could have spread shrapnel across the small town.
Vinyl chloride, a recognized human carcinogen used in the production of PVC, was discharged from five railway carriages as enormous plumes of black smoke visible over eastern Ohio and western Pennsylvania.
The EPA announced on Tuesday that Norfolk Southern must remediate polluted soil and water, compensate the EPA for cleaning services provided to households and businesses, and attend public meetings to keep communities informed of the cleanup process.
The EPA statement is the strongest and most dramatic response to the chemical spill from the Biden administration thus far, which has previously been accused of paying little attention to the problem.
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