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With Casey’s efforts, Darlington Township has received more than $1.2 million from Norfolk Southern in relief following train derailment

Casey has repeatedly fought for resources for Pennsylvanians affected by the derailment and worked to hold Norfolk Southern accountable for the cleanup and to help the community recover

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) announced that Norfolk Southern Corporation has reimbursed Darlington Township for $544,700, the estimated cost to repair East Palestine Road, which was damaged as a result of the Norfolk Southern train derailment on February 3. In total, Senator Casey has pushed Norfolk Southern to provide more than $1.2 million for Darlington Township following the train derailment.

“In the six months since Norfolk Southern’s disastrous train derailment, I have fought to hold the rail company accountable for the hell they’ve put the Darlington community through,” Senator Casey said. “This money will help fix East Palestine Road but that’s just the start of what Darlington residents, businesses, and the wider Beaver County community are going to need. It will take years for Darlington families to rebuild their lives and Norfolk Southern owes it to them to be there every step of the way.”

Following the Norfolk Southern Train Derailment in February 2023, Senator Casey, along with U.S. Senator John Fetterman (D-PA) and Ohio’s U.S. Senators, sent letters to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Transportation Safety Board urging them to hold Norfolk Southern accountable for releasing hazardous materials into the air and water, relay rail safety concerns from constituents and experts, and ensure proper resources and assistance were reaching affected residents in Darlington Township.

That same month, Senator Casey, along with members from both the Pennsylvania and Ohio congressional delegations, sent a letter to Norfolk Southern Corporation President and CEO Alan Shaw to remind him that his company, as the carrier responsible for operating the derailed train, has a legal and moral obligation to the residents of East Palestine, Ohio and Darlington Township, Pennsylvania. The Senators also demanded to know 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.

In March 2023, Senators Casey and Fetterman introduced bipartisan legislation, the Railway Safety Act of 2023, to prevent future train disasters by taking key steps to improve rail safety protocols, such as enhancing safety procedures for trains carrying hazardous materials, establishing requirements for wayside defect detectors, creating a permanent requirement for railroads to operate with at least two-person crews, increasing fines for wrongdoing committed by rail carriers, and more. In May 2023, the Railway Safety Act advanced of out the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation by a vote of 16-11. Included in the legislation are provisions based on Casey’s Assistance for Local Heroes During Train Crises Act to set aside funds—paid for by companies that ship and carry hazardous materials—to provide emergency responders, firefighters, and law enforcement with the financial resources needed to replace equipment, pay workers overtime, and address other urgent costs.

In response to the concerns of farmers and agricultural producers in and around the Norfolk Southern derailment site in East Palestine and Darlington Township, Senators Casey and Fetterman sent a letter to Thomas Vilsack, Secretary of the Department of Agriculture (USDA), and Michael Regan, Administrator of the EPA urging the Biden Administration to deploy resources to the region to help farmers conduct any necessary testing of their soils, plant tissue, and livestock, and to interpret the results of those tests as they pertain to the safety and marketability of their crops and products. Additionally, after reports of Darlington Township residents being denied assistance, including reimbursements for receipts and inconvenience checks, at the Family Assistance Center in East Palestine, Ohio, Senator Casey, along with Senator Fetterman and U.S. Representative Chis Deluzio (D-PA-17), urged the company to provide assistance to Darlington Township residents in zip codes 16115, 16120, and 16141.

In July 2023, Senators Casey and Fetterman sent a letter to Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg and Deputy Administrator of the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) Tristan Brown in support of a proposed rule requiring railroads to share real-time train consist information with emergency responders. This proposed rule is similar to language from the Assistance for Local Heroes During Train Crises Act as well, and will help ensure the safety of first responders and their communities.