Federal authorities have ordered Norfolk Southern to hold back toxic waste from shipping from the East Palestine, Ohio, train derailment so it can review disposal plans.
The Environmental Protection Agency said it “will ensure that high-level waste is disposed of safely and legally at EPA-certified facilities to prevent further release of hazardous substances and impacts to communities,” according to a statement provided to CNN on Saturday .
Until Friday, Norfolk Southern “was solely responsible for the disposal of waste generated by the East Palestine train derailment,” the agency added, but waste disposal plans “will be subject to EPA review and approval.”
The decision comes after complaints from Texas and Michigan officials that the states were not warned.
About 2 million gallons of firewater from the crash site was expected to be dumped in Harris County, Texas, with about half a million gallons already there, according to the county executive.
“It’s a very real problem. they told us yesterday that the material was coming only to find out today that it’s been here for a week,” Judge Lina Hidalgo told CNN on Thursday.
Norfolk Southern could not immediately be reached for comment.
Follow The Post’s coverage of Ohio train derailment
Contaminated soil from the derailment site was transported to US Ecology Wayne Disposal in Belleville, Michigan.
Representative Debbie Dingell of Michigan told the news outlet that neither she nor Michigan’s governor. Gretchen Whitmer was aware of plans to deliver toxic waste to disposal sites in her area.
“I called everybody,” Dingell said. “No one really thought it would come here.”
Governor of Ohio. Mike DeWine said 4,832 cubic yards of soil had been removed from the ground in East Palestine and about six trucks were on their way to Michigan.
Residents in the East Palestine region have expressed their frustration at the lack of real information and assistance from both local officials and the Biden administration. The train derailment led to residents complaining of feeling sick after toxic chemicals appeared in the air, water and soil.
Last week, East Palestine Mayor Trent Conaway blasted President Biden for going to Ukraine for a surprise visit instead of the scene of the toxic train derailment, calling it “the biggest slap in the face.”
More than 1.7 million gallons of contaminated fluid have been removed from the derailment site, according to a Thursday news release from the Ohio Emergency Management Agency.