27 February 2023- After saying nearly two weeks ago they would conduct independent water sampling of every well within two miles of the Norfolk Southern derailment, the PA Department of Environmental Protection announces they have collected samples from 13 of the 16 wells inside of a one mile radius. Additional testing of the three remaining wells within the one mile radius as well as testing between one and two miles is expected to continue this week. Results from the first round of testing are, as well, expected to be revealed this week.
“The Department of Environmental Protection has been on the scene since the first hours after the Norfolk Southern train derailment, and we will stay in communities like Darlington Township as long as it takes to assure Pennsylvanians their air, water, and environment are safe,” said Acting DEP Secretary Rich Negrin, who visited communities in Beaver County twice this week. “DEP staff is on the ground right now, professionally and efficiently taking independent samples of drinking water near the derailment site so that Pennsylvanians can have the information they need to keep themselves and their families safe.”
The DEP is stressing that the wells are being tested by them proactively contacting residents within the radius. Concerned residents who are beyond the two-mile radius are encouraged to reach out to DEP to request testing by calling 412-442-4000.
DEP is using its own laboratories to test for volatile organic compounds that were on some of the train cars, including vinyl chloride, ethylene glycol, butyl acrylates, ethylhexyl acrylate, benzene, and ethanol.
This comes after the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency announces an online train derailment dashboard last week.