EAST PALESTINE, Ohio — With the Easter holiday approaching, East Palestine received some good news, with the results from soil testing determining that the East Palestine City Park is safe. As a result, the highly anticipated Easter Egg Hunt scheduled for Saturday, April 8, will proceed as scheduled.
In addition to the testing, the village has cleaned recreational equipment, including the pool, tennis courts, and playground to get the park ready for the season, while the mulch and landscape fabric was removed and the playground was power washed and disinfected.
The entire testing results can be found here.
"We're thrilled that the testing has confirmed that our beloved park is safe for our community to enjoy," East Palestine Mayor Trent Conaway said in a statement. "We want to thank the U.S. EPA for their comprehensive evaluation, which has allowed us to put any concerns to rest and focus on the upcoming events that will be hosted at our park again."
The testing was performed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) and came after concerns were raised regarding potential soil contamination following the train derailment that took place in East Palestine on Feb. 3. During the incident, a 38 cars in a 141-car Norfolk Southern train derailed, including 11 that were carrying hazardous chemicals.
A temporary evacuation ensued prior to a controlled release of the chemicals that were on board. The fallout from the derailment has received widespread national attention and has been at the center of a larger discussion regarding regulations in the rail industry.