Another toxic train derailment has occurred, this time near the community of Raymond, Minnesota. Several rail cars containing the highly flammable chemical ethanol ignited and continue to burn, according to reports by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
It’s been only two months since a Norfolk Southern train derailed in East Palestine, Ohio, contaminating the community of 4,700 with toxic vinyl chloride.
The two incidents aren’t a mere coincidence: As a new analysis of national accident data by The Guardian shows, toxic contaminations, chemical exposures, and other industrial accidents are happening with alarming regularity.
Nearly One Industrial Accident Every 1.5 Days
The news outlet found nearly 200 incidents over the course of 2022 and more than 30 in the first seven weeks of 2023, and created this interactive map listing all of them. They range in severity but are occurring at a frightening pace. They include the following:
- A rupture of the Keystone pipeline in northern Kansas that spilled 588,000 gallons of diluted bitumen crude oil on the surrounding land and waterways, with a cleanup cost of nearly $500 million
- A major sulfur dioxide leak near the town of Magnolia, Arkansas, causing the shutdown of U.S. Route 79
- A spill of caustic materials at a California recycling plant, resulting in the hospitalization of nine people and the evacuation of 300
- A leak of propionic acid and acetic anhydride from a pair of train cars near Shreveport, Louisiana, prompting the evacuation of 130 people
The Severity of Accidents Is Increasing
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), accidents at industrial facilities are becoming worse, with more Americans requiring medical treatment or shelter due to these incidents every year. In its study, The Guardian reports that the average annual cost of toxic contaminations, chemical exposures, and other accidents now approaches $500 million.
What To Do If You Experience a Toxic Contamination, Chemical Exposure, or Other Industrial Accident
If you or your loved ones are the victims of a toxic contamination, chemical exposure, or other industrial accident, seek medical attention immediately. Do your best to document where the accident occurred, what chemicals or other substances you believe were involved, and report this information to your doctor or another medical professional.
Then it’s time to seek the counsel of an experienced toxic contamination lawyer. The toxic contamination lawyers at the Roach Law Firm have a long record of victories in environmental litigation involving some of the largest companies in the world:
- $119 million recovered for roughly 7,000 Oklahoma residents impacted by lead, arsenic, and zinc contamination caused by Phelps Dodge Corporation
- $90 million recovered for workers exposed to silica and asbestos at the Lone Star Steel Mill
- $47 million recovered for workers exposed to rubber products at the Red River Army Depot
You may not be able to stop an industrial accident from happening, but make sure to take the necessary steps to protect yourself, your family, and your property after one occurs.