U.S. Senators Bob Casey (D-PA) and John Fetterman (D-PA) and Representative Chris Deluzio (D-PA) sent a letter to Norfolk Southern CEO Alan Shaw urging the company to provide assistance to Darlington Township residents in zip codes 16115, 16120, and 16141. The Members of Congress sent the letter after repeated reports of Pennsylvania residents being turned away at the Family Assistance Center in East Palestine.
“Norfolk Southern’s policy of only reimbursing the residents of the roughly 130+ dwellings that were officially evacuated ignores the reality of the situation for residents across Beaver and Lawrence Counties. Families across these counties, not just those officially evacuated, saw a toxic plume and acted to protect their families at a time of considerably uncertainty. Similarly, local officials took action to keep them and their families safe. Their decisions were justified, as is their ongoing concern for their health and wellbeing. They should not be denied assistance because Norfolk Southern, a multi-billion-dollar corporation, insists on adhering to rigid, unrealistic boundaries that do not reflect the lived reality of the derailment or the impact of the derailment,” the Members wrote.
Casey and Fetterman have repeatedly advocated for resources for Pennsylvania and Ohio residents affected by the derailment and are working to hold Norfolk Southern accountable for the cleanup and to help the community recover. They pressed the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on its plan to hold Norfolk Southern accountable for releasing hazardous materials into the air and water and highlighted the need to ensure the proper resources are reaching East Palestine and Darlington Township to continue to aid the residents in and around the region. The Senators wrote to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to express rail safety concerns they have heard from constituents, rail experts, and railroad workers as the NTSB conducts its investigation into the derailment.
In a letter to Norfolk Southern Corporation President and CEO Alan Shaw, Casey and Fetterman emphasized the company’s legal and moral obligation to the residents of East Palestine and Darlington Township as the carrier responsible for operating the derailed train and demanded a response, in writing, on how the company plans to be an active member of response and clean-up operations as well as provide full, adequate, and equitable renumeration for the damages caused to the surrounding communities and environment by the derailment of their train.
Full text of the letter to Norfolk Southern is below and can be found here.
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