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(National) Train Derailment is Off The Rails, and People Want Answers.

No one seems to be talking about how bad the system is. Our railway system is not in the most fantastic shape, but if you spend five minutes on social media, you will find the subject is a hot topic for many, as derailments seem to be in the news more often.

Since the start of 2023, more than a dozen rail accidents have been reported in the US, with the Ohio train derailment on February 3rd as being one of the most significant incidents. The derailment involved carriages from a 150-car freight liner carrying toxic chemicals that crashed off East Palestine, Ohio tracks. Since the East Palestine incident, other derailments have involved the same company, Norfolk Southern, in Ohio.

The derailment occurred near the Clark County Fairgrounds in Springfield, Ohio, on March 4th. Although this one did not have toxic chemicals, residents living nearby were asked to shelter in place “out of an abundance of caution” while the disaster was addressed. The derailment in Michigan occurred two weeks after the one in East Palistine, Ohio. The rail operator has been scrutinized for its response to the Ohio derailment. Several lawsuits have been filed against Norfolk Southern alleging negligence, and residents exposed to the dangerous chemicals from the derailment have voiced safety concerns.

A Union Pacific freight train derailed in Gothenburg, Nebraska, on February 21st, , an accident that followed three in the same area involving coal trains in 2022. Steven Ditmeyer, a former top official at the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), told investigative news outlet The Lever that the severity of the crash might have been aggravated by the lack of Electronically Controlled Pneumatic (ECP) brakes. However, to our knowledge, these communities have not heard anything from Pete Buttigieg, the secretary of transportation for the United States Government, over these claims. Cities like Riverbank, California and Sandstone, West Virginia, are no strangers to it either. The video is a collection of footage from trains derailing that were captured and uploaded to social media. Leave a comment, what do you think about this story and subject?


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