Earlier this month in Ohio, a train veered off course, eventually causing a total derailment, along with the spill of various toxic chemicals. Many state residents have been directly impacted with water, air, and other critical resources now contaminated.
Since this incident, questions have arisen about how it could have been prevented. Some people are blaming a lack of regulations, whereas others are pointing fingers at the Transportation Department, along with other sources.
Amid the discourse and catastrophic aftermath, one organization that’s now come under fire is none other than Norfolk Southern Railway, according to Conservative Review.
A Closer Look at the Spotlight on Norfolk Southern
Since the unfortunate incident in East Palestine, Ohio, some Americans are now looking at Norfolk Southern and its history of providing funds to Republican and Democratic lawmakers.
Also under the limelight are the various other scandals Norfolk Southern has faced that precede the train derailment earlier this month. Some of these scandals include hazmat rail issues last year.
Right now, it’s being reported that Norfolk Southern will have to bear responsibility for helping the eastern Ohio community recover from the train derailment.
Asked a representative for Norfolk Southern what they would be doing to help residents here. @fromkalen then asks if the $1 million Norfolk pledged to East Palestine is enough.
Prior to filming he said he couldn’t speak to press. pic.twitter.com/A89sc4vUAW
— Savanah Hernandez (@sav_says_) February 23, 2023
Though the accuracy of this is coming into question, seeing as the groups and officials who would ordinarily hold Norfolk Southern to account have also taken money from the company.
This has been deemed by some as pay-to-play politics, where Norfolk Southern reportedly lines the pockets of the right leaders with the bet that it’ll come in handy later down the line.
Lobbying funds spent by Norfolk Southern not only span across the political aisle, but also go all the way back to the 1990s, totaling almost $100 million.
Concerns about Norfolk Southern are not mutually exclusive to the various donations they’ve made to lawmakers in both political parties. The company also reported record profits, such as $12 billion in 2022.
Due to how well the company is doing, many Americans believe Norfolk Southern ought to have made some investments in regulations, equipment updates, and other avenues that would have likely prevented the train from derailing earlier this month.
Norfolk Southern, the company whose train derailed in Ohio and unleashed chemicals, made a record $12 billion in revenue last year.
Instead of investing in better safety measures, what did the company do? It authorized a $10 billion stock buyback.
Corporate greed, folks.
— Robert Reich (@RBReich) February 11, 2023
Though because this did not happen, Norfolk Southern is facing accusations of corporate greed, a lack of transparency, and more.
Time will ultimately reveal whether or not Norfolk Southern is held accountable or if the donations made to political officials for decades on end help the company avoid any serious consequences.
Meanwhile, the people of Ohio, especially those in close proximity to the train derailment, are stuck with the aftermath of this disaster.
Do you believe Norfolk Southern could have prevented the train derailment in Ohio if the company had employed different measures? You can share your thoughts and insight with us in the comments feed.