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New study reveals widespread effects of East Palestine train derailment

By Andrew Powell


Impacts far larger in scale than initially thought.

A new study has documented widespread lasting effects of the devastating Norfolk Southern train derailment that occurred in East Palestine, Ohio, in early February 2023.

The study was conducted by IOPScience using precipitation chemistry measurements collected by the National Atmospheric Deposition Program, or NADP. It estimated that the extent of deposited compounds due to the derailment extended from the Midwest to the Northeast and as far as Canada, while going as far south as North Carolina.

The study notes that in total, portions of 16 states have been impacted, covering an area of roughly 540,000 square miles and affecting around 110 million people.

At the time of the derailment, the train was pulling around 50 tanks, hoppers and box cars – of which 38 were derailed, and at least 11 of which were carrying hazardous materials that were subsequently ignited by the fire department, and burned over a period of several days.

Hazardous materials involved in the crash included vinyl chloride, petroleum lube oil, polyethylene, polyvinyl, polypropylene, propylene glycol, diethylene glycol, ethylhexyl acrylate, butyl acrylates, isobutylene and fuel additives…


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