The Stream

What can fully address the toxic legacy of the Ohio train crash?

On Thursday, June 22 at 19:30 GMT:
Residents of a US town whose lives were upended by the derailment of a train carrying toxic materials say they are still facing uncertainty months after the crash.

People in East Palestine in Ohio say their health has suffered and their homes have been contaminated after emergency crews made a controlled burn of vinyl chloride on the Norfolk Southern train that went off the rails on February 3. State leaders and environmental agencies say the air and water has been tested and found safe, and the cleanup is continuing. The US National Transportation Safety Board will hold a public hearing in East Palestine on June 22.

As community advocates urge Ohio’s leaders to do more to help them, a new film by Al Jazeera’s Fault Lines highlights lax safety in the country’s rail cargo industry. ‘Derailed: Investigating the US Railroad Industry’ asks whether enough is being done to prevent future crashes on the US rail network, particularly along stretches that run just metres from people’s homes.

In this episode of The Stream, we’ll hear how people in East Palestine have been faring in the aftermath of the Norfolk Southern crash and ask what it will take to improve safety in the US rail freight business.

In this episode of The Stream, we are joined by:
Jessica Conard, @JessicaConardEP 
East Palestine community activist

Jami Wallace
President, Unity Council for East Palestine Train Derailment

Julia Rock, @jul1arock
Staff reporter, The Lever