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Ohio Officials Estimate Over 43,000 Aquatic Animals Died After East Palestine Derailment

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) estimated that more than 43,000 aquatic animals were “potentially killed as a result of the derailment” in East Palestine, Ohio, local news outlets reported on Thursday, February 23.

ODNR Director Mary Mertz said that the agency surveyed waterways the morning after the February 3 derailment to calculate that approximately 38,222 small fish and 5,550 other aquatic species were found dead, “potentially killed as a result” of the incident, reports said.

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reported that water quality testing showed “very low levels of two contaminants, butyl acrylate and ethyl hexyl acrylate, in Leslie Run. We have found no traces of butyl acrylate and much lower levels of ethyl hexyl acrylate in North Fork Little Beaver Creek. No vinyl chloride has been detected in any of these waterways.”

EPA officials continued to assure residents that the drinking water in the area was safe.

Videos posted by the Ohio EPA on Thursday, which they said were captured in Columbiana County waterways, specifically Bull Creek and Beaver Creek, show live minnows and crawfish. Credit: Ohio EPA via Storyful

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