Ohio Chemical Explosion
BC Forest Fire and Smoke over the mountain near Hope.

On February 3rd, 2023, a train carrying hazardous materials, including vinyl chloride, derailed in East Palestine, Ohio. Vinyl chloride is an ingredient in PVC, and a known brain, lung, liver, and blood carcinogen, as well as being flammable and toxic. The train, from Norfolk Southern, caused a pileup of cars the equivalent of more than half of the train’s length. Over a fifth of these cars were carrying hazardous materials.

The wreckage caught fire and continued to burn the entire weekend, and all nearby residents were ordered to evacuate immediately. Authorities decided that a “controlled burn” was the best option, essentially burning the fuel until it put itself out, and trying to stop it from spreading. On Monday, February 6th, the authorities implemented this action. As this was happening, the vapors and smoke travelled through the air to many surrounding areas, and people were reporting smelling and tasting the chemical in the air, as well as headaches caused by the chemical fire. The smoke could even be seen from a plane. Toxic waste seeped into the ground and waterways, causing immediate damage to the ecosystem.

On February 10th, authorities declared that there was no immediate danger in the air or waterways, and that residents could return to their homes safely. Of course, many people still do not feel comfortable returning, especially after the controlled burn looked anything but controlled.

Events like this occur more regularly than is known to the public, as politicians and local authorities try their best to keep the incidents under wraps, as it is well known how detrimental to the environment these events are. This Ohio train car explosion is especially concerning because of the particular kind of toxic chemical it was carrying, as well as how long the fire was allowed to burn. While many people have been, and will continue to be, affected, but the environment and ecosystems will show signs of damage for decades to come, with some issues not showing up until much further down the road.

Toxic Fumes Are Released From Burning Train That Derailed in Ohio

The authorities ordered residents living near the site in eastern Ohio to evacuate on Monday as the chemicals were drained to reduce the risk of an explosion. Send any friend a story As a subscriber, you have 10 gift articles to give each month. Anyone can read what you share.

Ohio crews conduct a 'controlled release' of toxic chemicals from derailed train cars

Crews in Ohio began to release hazardous chemicals from five cars of a train that derailed amid fears of a "catastrophic" explosion on Monday at the site near the Ohio-Pennsylvania border. What officials also called a "controlled explosion" began on Monday afternoon with reports of a loud boom and large plume of black smoke seen.

Residents not yet allowed to return to homes near site of fiery train derailment in Ohio | CNN

Residents of the Ohio village of East Palestine remain unable to return home after a controlled release Monday of a toxic chemical from cars that were part of a train derailment three days ago, Mayor Trent Conaway said during an evening news conference.


Never Miss A Story

Get our Weekly recap with the latest news, articles and resources.
Cookie policy
We use our own and third party cookies to allow us to understand how the site is used and to support our marketing campaigns.