(WJW) — Federal and state leaders issued statements on the Norfolk Southern train derailment in Springfield Township, Clark County, on Saturday, following multiple train derailments in recent months in Ohio, including the toxic train derailment in East Palestine.
A spokesperson for Norfolk Southern says that approximately 20 cars of a 212-car train derailed while traveling south through Springfield. The company said no one was injured in the derailment and that no hazardous materials were involved, FOX 8’s sister station WDTN reports.
Norfolk Southern told authorities that hazardous materials are not involved in this incident. First responders and emergency officials are currently working at the site to confirm their report, according to a Facebook post from Clark County officials.
Residents were asked to shelter-in-place out of an abundance of caution.
“The Clark County Emergency Management Agency is asking residents within 1,000 feet of a train derailment at Ohio 41 near the Prime Ohio Business Park to shelter-in-place out of an abundance of caution,” the post says. “We ask that all residents in need of travel to Ohio 41 find alternate routes. Local and state officials are on scene, including the Springfield Fire Rescue Division and the Springfield Police Department.”
U.S Senator Sherrod Brown introduced the bipartisan Railway Safety Act of 2023 with U.S. Senator J.D. Vance last week to prevent future train disasters by taking a number of steps to improve rail safety protocols, including safety procedures for trains carrying hazardous materials, establishing requirements for wayside defect detectors and creating a permanent requirement for railroads to operate with at least two-person crews.
“Sandusky, Steubenville, East Palestine, and now Springfield – four Norfolk Southern derailments in less than five months because this corporation has been more concerned with its profit margin than with Ohioans’ safety. Ohio communities should not be forced to live in fear of another disaster. It’s unacceptable – it’s why we must pass my bipartisan Railway Safety Act with Senator Vance, now,” said Brown.
A Norfolk Southern train carrying rock salt and other materials derailed in Ravenna in November 2022. Investigators say there were no hazardous materials involved.
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine tweeted a statement saying that President Biden and Secretary Buttigieg called him to offer help from the federal government.
U.S. Secretary Pete Buttigieg also released a statement on Twitter say that no hazardous material release has been reported, but the department will continue to monitor closely and FRA personnel are en route.