WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Sherrod Brown, D-OH, and J.D. Vance, R-OH, sent a letter to Administrator Michael Regan of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Director Rochelle Walensky of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) urging them to ensure individuals affected by the Norfolk Southern train derailment have access to baseline medical testing.
“The residents of East Palestine and the surrounding community deserve to know if their health has been compromised by this disaster now and for years to come. Therefore, we urge you to work with your colleagues across the federal government to allocate the resources and expertise needed to begin the surveys and assessment needed to establish a medical baseline for the community,” wrote the senators.
Brown has repeatedly advocated for resources for the Ohio community and is working to hold Norfolk Southern accountable for the cleanup and to make the community whole. He visited East Palestine earlier this month and again visited today to host a roundtable discussion with residents, business owners, and local official regarding their ongoing needs and concerns as they deal with the aftermath of the Norfolk Southern train derailment.
Brown’s second visit to East Palestine follows a letter he sent to the directors of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (OEPA) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requesting additional information on plans to monitor East Palestine and the surrounding area for dioxins – a pollutant that can result from combustion of vinyl chloride and can be toxic to humans and animals.
Brown also sent a letter to Norfolk Southern Corporation President and CEO Alan Shaw reminding the company that as the carrier responsible for operating the derailed train, it has a legal and moral obligation to the residents of East Palestine, Ohio and Darlington Township, Pennsylvania.
Brown sent a letter to Gov. Mike DeWine asking him to officially declare a disaster in East Palestine and seek the full support of the federal government to bolster the state of Ohio’s ongoing clean-up efforts. Brown led letters to NTSB and EPA raising concerns and calling on the agencies to investigate and provide assistance to the East Palestine community. He also wrote a letter to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention requesting the agency act immediately to provide additional assistance and resources to help the community assess and address the public health impacts of the derailment.