Train Derailment in Ohio Results in an Air Quality Disaster

Five days after a train carrying vinyl chloride derailed and exploded near the Ohio-Pennsylvania border, crews initiated a controlled burn of toxic chemicals to prevent a much more dangerous explosion. Thousands of residents of East Palestine, Ohio, a town of about 5,000 people, were evacuated, and officials warned the controlled burn would create a phosgene and hydrogen chloride plume across the region.

Image from FalconryFinace on Twitter

The explosion serves as a wake-up call to the potential for more deadly freight rail derailments, according to public health advocates. They believe that ineffective oversight and a largely self-monitoring industry are responsible for the wreck.

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