At about 8:55 p.m. ET on February 3, 2023, a Norfolk Southern freight train derailed in East Palestine, Ohio, about a quarter-mile west of the Ohio-Pennsylvania state line.
Norfolk Southern reported the incident to the National Response Center at 10:53 p.m. and EPA arrived on-site by 2:00 a.m. on February 4.
Of the 150 train cars, about 50 cars were affected by the derailment. The rest were uncoupled and removed from the scene. Twenty of the affected cars contained hazardous materials, including vinyl chloride, ethylene glycol, ethylhexyl acrylate, butyl acrylate and isobutylene.
Some cars caught fire. Some cars spilled their loads into an adjacent ditch that feeds Sulphur Run, a stream that joins Leslie Run, which eventually empties into the Ohio River.
Since arriving, EPA has continuously tested the air in and around East Palestine. We've used our state-of-the-art ASPECT plane and are making daily runs with our Trace Atmospheric Gas Analyzer (TAGA), a mobile analytical laboratory.
The state of Ohio, in partnership with local health agencies and local public water systems, has been testing the water.
The Columbiana County Health District continues to test private water wells.
EPA has also issued several legal orders to Norfolk Southern to instruct them to carry out various actions and to hold the railroad accountable for associated cleanup costs.