Norfolk Southern Ceo Will Discuss Making It Right Following Ohio Derailment With Senators- After a company train derailed in East Palestine, Ohio, last month, CEO Alan Shaw will tell a U.S. Senate subcommittee Thursday how he would “make it right.”
Shaw will address what committee Democrats called “environmental and public health threats” from the disaster at a 10 a.m. ET session of the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.
Shaw will tell the Senate panel he is “deeply regretful for the impact this derailment has had on the residents of East Palestine and nearby communities,” according to prepared testimony obtained by NBC News.
We’ll clean the scene quickly and safely. Shaw will say, “We are making progress every day,” according to the written comments.
The CEO will also emphasize Norfolk Southern’s $20 million in reimbursements and initiatives for affected residents and first responders.
. We listen to experts and work with state, federal, and municipal governments. This surveillance will continue as needed.”
. The measure requires wayside defect detectors, increases fines, and mandates two-person crews for hazardous material trains.
Various congressional committees are investigating the East Palestine derailment.
On Thursday, House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., and Environment, Manufacturing, and Critical Materials Subcommittee Chair Bill Johnson, R-Ohio, announced a March 28 hearing on the environmental response to the derailment.
“The February train derailment has upended the lives of those living in East Palestine and the surrounding region,” Rogers and Johnson said. “We will hear from federal, state, and local officials about their efforts and initiatives to address environmental hazards.”
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A westbound Norfolk Southern freight train with 11 tank cars carrying hazardous goods derailed and ignited about 9 p.m. local time on Feb. 3. Vinyl chloride, a highly flammable carcinogen, was among the compounds.
Though residents and officials expressed alarm, no fatalities were reported following the incident. At last week’s meeting, rail union representatives informed Biden administration officials that East Palestine rail workers had fallen ill during site cleanup.
On Feb. 23, the NTSB released a preliminary report blaming an overheated wheel bearing for the disaster and fire. The bearing’s temperature was 253 degrees hotter than ambient when the train was stopped, over Norfolk Southern’s required temperature of 200 degrees.
Another Norfolk Southern train derailed in Ohio on Saturday, prompting Springfield residents to shelter in place. Despite power shortages, the train did not carry dangerous cargo, and no one was injured.
Government agencies are reviewing Norfolk Southern occurrences. Following the derailments, the NTSB announced a special probe into the company’s organization and safety culture on Tuesday. The Federal Railroad Administration announced a 60-day corporate supplement safety assessment.
The chief executive of one of the nation's largest railroads is coming to a Senate hearing with an apology and a commitment to send millions of dollars to the village on the Ohio-Pennsylvania border disrupted by a fiery derailment. https://t.co/2JFA4C6yst
— AP Politics (@AP_Politics) March 9, 2023
On Tuesday, Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., criticized Norfolk Southern for “years pushing the federal government to ignore safety advice” and conducting a $20 billion stock buyback scheme instead of improving safety equipment.
Norfolk Southern announced on Wednesday that it would open a new regional training facility in Ohio for first responders and extend its Operation Awareness and Response program, which trains them to respond to rail disasters appropriately. Norfolk Southern’s Bellevue, Ohio, yard begins training on March 22.