EPA to pause shipment of hazardous waste from Ohio train derailment to Indiana

Federal teams are providing flyers to East Palestine, OH families and conducting health surveys...
Federal teams are providing flyers to East Palestine, OH families and conducting health surveys following toxic train wreck.
Published: Mar. 7, 2023 at 10:41 AM EST
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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WPTA) - The Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) says after pushback from Gov. Eric Holcomb, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has agreed to pause the shipment of hazardous materials from the East Palestine train derailment to Indiana until more testing can be done.

On March 3, Gov. Holcomb announced that his office is working with Indianapolis-based Pace Labs to test the hazardous materials from the Feb. 3 train derailment that are being sent to Heritage Environmental Services in Roachdale. The message came days after he publicly denounced the decision to bring the toxic waste to the Indiana landfill.

BACKGROUND: Gov. Holcomb orders more testing on hazardous waste from train derailment - Roachdale waste facility has previous violations - Waste shipments resume from Ohio toxic train derailment - Fort Wayne Utilities ensures residents Ohio train derailment won’t impact local water supply

IDEM says they were present as those samples were being taken from Roachdale landfill and say they will publicly share those results “as soon as they become available.

In response to the Governor’s request, they say the EPA has agreed to pause shipping any further material to Heritage Environmental Services until further testing can confirm there are no harmful levels of dioxins in the soil.

According to EPA records, the Roachdale facility had 12 quarters of violations going back to 2020. While the agency does not detail the violations, it is clear they involved noncompliance with the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, which outlines how facilities must handle various kinds of waste. The EPA did not consider the violations “significant.”

In an email to 21Investigates, the company’s legal team acknowledged an issue involving labels on a container in 2019, but declined to call it a “violation.”

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