East Palestine Residents – Our Hearts Go Out to You
According to our Transportation Secretary, there are about 1,000 derailments a year! Have there been any like what happened in this quiet little town of East Palestine?
I am sure there isn’t anything as devastating and alarming as this Ohio town is experiencing!
The children are the most vulnerable, for any carcinogenic chemicals, will cause long lasting and debilitating effects to their health. We are not sure what the long term and short-term effects will be. Norfolk Southern Railway Company reporting five toxic chemicals found in air, soil, or water surrounding the crash site. They are vinyl chloride, butyl acrylate, ethylene glycol, isobutylene, and ethylhexyl acrylate. Here’s a quick rundown of each chemical’s toxicity — and their byproducts when burned, which can also be toxic.
Vinyl chloride has gotten the most attention so far. It’s a colorless, flammable gas and a known carcinogen. Most studies on vinyl chloride are related to occupational exposure or to residents who live near factories that produce it. Those longer-term, chronic exposures could lead to certain liver, brain and lung cancers, lymphoma, and leukemia.
Short-term exposures, like those in East Palestine, can lead to irritation in eyes, nose, throat, and lungs. People can also suffer from headaches, dizziness, drowsiness, nausea, or tingling in the arms and legs.
As vinyl chloride burns, the gas can form byproducts including hydrogen chloride, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, and traces of phosgene. The EPA tested 480 homes in and around East Palestine and they say that they did not detect vinyl chloride or hydrogen chloride in any of them. Is that some confidence building?
The EPA has not indicated whether it tested for phosgene and has not yet returned STAT’s request for comment on the matter. Phosgene is hazardous at very low levels, noted Schettler, and has been used as a chemical weapon in war. “It’s highly corrosive to the lungs at really low levels, at fractions of a part per million.”
There should have been a planned response from the Railroad. This kind of transportation dates back 600 years (1550)! You would think that we would have developed all kinds of scenarios by now! We are in the age of misinformation. I can’t point the finger to anyone except NSR. Wasn’t there a better way to handle the chemicals without spilling them onto the open soil? To me, it looks like they reacted in haste, to have a controlled fire and exacerbate the poison multi statewide! With today’s technology – it just seems like the idea of dumping and burning was an idea from hundreds of years ago – where were the environmentalists in this decision?
From my vantage point, I thought about planes or aerial tankers that could have doused the fires and cooled the chemical holding tanks. Even if dumping the chemicals was the only solution, wasn’t there some kind of liner to put down and then have a vacuum and other tankers carry it away from the site and get it to a certified toxic dump land fille?
Time will tell what will happen. I hope that it can be cleaned up, but I believe that NSR should offer to purchase all of those homes , businesses, and land at pre-disaster values and allow the innocent victims a chance to move forward in their lives. These people were just living their lives, and now they have this!?!?
The contaminants spread into other regions and won’t be known for a long time or ever.
Our charity, Veterans’ Outreach, is located 25 miles from ground zero. We offer our help and support to veterans in East Palestine. If you care to help those vets with a donation, you can send it to Veterans’ Outreach @ 7 Belgrade Avenue Youngstown, Ohio 44505 or go to our website, veteransoutreach.org.
May God Bless East Palestine.