Trump Delivers Bottled Water During Visit to Ohio’s Toxic Derailment Site, Criticizes Biden Admin’s Response
Trump Delivers Bottled Water During Visit to Ohio’s Toxic Derailment Site, Criticizes Biden Admin’s Response

By Samantha Flom

Former President Donald J. Trump met with East PalestineOhio, residents and officials on Feb. 22, to provide much-needed bottled water and cleaning supplies as the village continues to recover from the aftermath of a recent train derailment and chemical spill.

“We’re bringing a lot of water—thousands of bottles,” Trump told reporters following a tour of the East Palestine Fire House. “We have it in trucks and we brought some on my plane today.”

On Feb. 3, life for the more than 4,700 residents of East Palestine was upended by the derailment of a Norfolk Southern train carrying hazardous chemicals, which were leaked into the surrounding environment. Those close to the crash were urged to evacuate their homes as authorities conducted a controlled burn of the chemicals to prevent a catastrophic explosion, but upon their return, some people began reporting health reactions like rashes, nausea, and headaches, in addition to animal illnesses and deaths.

Although federal and state authorities have assured residents that local air and water testing has yielded no cause for alarm, many remain skeptical of those claims.

East Palestine, Ohio, residents await the arrival of former President Donald Trump, who visited the town on Feb. 22 to survey the damage after the Feb. 3 derailment of a Norfolk Southern train. (Jeff Louderback/The Epoch Times)

Praising the East Palestine community for demonstrating the “tough and resilient heart of America” through their trials, Trump said that he had partnered with nonprofit organizations Blue Line Moving and digital solutions provider KORTX to coordinate the delivery of the donated water and cleaning supplies.

Trump was joined at the press conference by Sen. J.D. Vance (R-Ohio), East Palestine Mayor Trent Conaway, and Rep. Bill Johnson (R-Ohio). Prior to his Wednesday remarks, the former president paid a visit to nearby Little Beaver Creek, where he received a briefing from local officials on the environmental impacts of the spill.

Hours before Trump landed in Ohio, President Joe Biden returned home from a trip to Poland, during which he also made a surprise stop in Ukraine to pledge more financial aid to the war ravaged country—a move that upset some East Palestine residents and officials.

“That was the biggest slap in the face,” the mayor said on “Jesse Watters Primetime” on Monday. “That tells you right now he doesn’t care about us.

“He can send every agency he wants to, but I found that out this morning in one of the briefings that he was in Ukraine giving millions of dollars away to people over there and not to us, and I’m furious.”

Trump has also criticized the administration for its response, noting that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) had initially announced that it would not send aid to East Palestine but reversed course after he announced his visit.

“When I announced that I was coming, they changed their tune,” he said Wednesday, holding that his visit “opened up the dam” for the Biden administration to act.

“What this community needs now are not excuses and all of the other things you’ve been hearing, but answers and results, and that’s what I think you’re going to see,” Trump noted.

And if residents do not receive those answers and results, he added, “We will back.”

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