Woke NTSB Says 'Overheated Wheel Bearing' Derailed Train, Doesn't Even Call Secretary Mayor Pete Gay
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) issued a preliminary report yesterday on its investigation into the Norfolk Southern train derailment in East Palestine, Ohio. The report says the train's crew knew one car on the train had a badly overheated wheel bearing, and had already begun slowing the train just before the derailment.
Weirdly, the NTSB didn't place any of the blame for the February 3 crash or the subsequent toxic chemical spill on President Joe Biden, Transportation Secretary Mayor Pete Buttigieg, or on transgender kids in American schools forcing others to acknowledge their preferred pronouns. That's sure to come up on Newsmax.
Buttigieg was in East Palestine himself yesterday, where he didn't buy McDonald's hamburgers for anyone, unlike Donald Trump, who was there the day before and personally fixed everything. While Buttigieg was there, he acknowledged the rightwing media complaints that he hadn't personally visited the site sooner, saying he'd "do some thinking" on whether he should have gone sooner. Oh for your sake, Pete! You really do over-intellectualize things a bit, but that's how you do:
"What I tried to do was balance two things — my desire to be involved and engaged in on the ground, which is how I am generally wired to act and my desire to follow the norm of transportation secretaries allowing NTSB to really lead the initial stages of the public facing work," he told reporters. "I'll do some thinking about whether I got that balance right. But I think the most important thing is, first of all, making sure that the residents here have what they need."
For all his introspection, Buttigieg got a Fox News story headlining how he'd gone on MSNBC last night and cruelly pointed out Donald Trump's rollback of safety regulations, what a monster. Fox News also ran a fun story rounding up rightwingers on Twiitter mocking the "leather dress shoes" Buttigieg had worn, because what real man goes to a muddy disaster site in anything but steel-toed work boots?
\u201cIs he wearing\u2026 dress shoes? \ud83e\uddd0\u201d— Jake Schneider (@Jake Schneider) 1677175349
So there's your payback for the liberal media making fun of Ron DeSantis's weird white hurricane boots, haw haw. Maybe Pete left his high heels in the car, replied one wag, because you know he is an effete gay homosexual who never wore boots, certainly not during his combat tour in Afghanistan. That's him, second on the left, in a campaign photo. Those look like boots!
Jesus, you see how easy it is to get sucked into this stupid performative macho shit? Anyway, if Buttigieg had worn gnarly steel-toed work boots, wingnut media would have accused him of fakery because does he really wear Thorogood American Heritage steel-toed work boots around his soft office job? He does not, and how dare he spend $250 on boots just for a photo op? Damn him to hell!
So yes, the NTSB report.
Among the top findings were that the train crew appears to have acted appropriately; the train was traveling 47 miles per hour, a bit below the maximum speed for that area of 50 miles per hour. It was already slowing a bit when automated trackside monitoring equipment detected that a wheel bearing on the twenty-third car of the train was dangerously hot, 253°F above the ambient temperature of 10°F. (When car 23 passed two earlier detectors, they picked up temperatures that were rising, but well below the temperature threshold that would trigger an alarm.)
The detection equipment "transmitted a critical audible alarm message instructing the crew to slow and stop the train to inspect a hot axle," and the engineer began slowing the train down, but then "an automatic emergency brake application initiated," which Axios explains may have resulted from train cars separating from each other.
Once the train stopped, the crew "observed fire and smoke and notified the Cleveland East dispatcher of a possible derailment," and with permission from the dispatcher, set the hand brakes on the first two cars and uncoupled the locomotives to move them a mile away for safety. The report does not note whether the train crew said "Whew!"
Thirty-eight cars of the 149-car train derailed; among them were 11 tank cars carrying hazardous chemicals. Fire broke out and also damaged 12 cars on the train that hadn't derailed.
Axios notes that first responders who arrived on the scene got the initial fire under control, but Ohio authorities were concerned about five derailed tank cars carrying vinyl chloride, a carcinogenic chemical used in making PVC plastic. Temperatures inside one of the cars kept rising, "suggesting the chemical was undergoing a polymerization reaction and could explode."
That prompted local responders on February 6 to evacuate a larger area around the crash site, then vent the five cars and burn off the chemicals, which took several hours. The NTSB report is careful to point out that the agency wasn't involved in that decision, or in testing air and water quality following the crash. Please take your questions to the EPA and to Ohio GOP Governor Mike DeWine, who authorized the chemical burnoff after advisers warned him of the high risk of an explosion. (OK, fine, the NTSB didn't specify DeWine, just that it wasn't the feds' decision.)
The NTSB will focus its ongoing investigation on:
[T]he wheelset and bearing; tank car design and derailment damage; a review of the accident response, including the venting and burning of the vinyl chloride; railcar design and maintenance procedures and practices; NS [Norfolk Southern] use of wayside defect detectors; and NS railcar inspection practices.
We should also point out that nowhere in the report does the NTSB examine the crucial railroad safety thoughts of Donald Trump Jr., who on Wednesday night went on Newsmax to explain that nobody in the Biden administration knows what they're doing because Pete Buttiieg is gay and that was his only job qualification.
The son of the former president, who has never held a real job outside his daddy's business/crime organization (or gigs in rightwing media resulting from that nepo baby status), claimed Joe Biden "doesn't give a crap" and "couldn't care less" about the people of East Palestine. You know, unlike his father, master of empathy Donald "have a good time" Trump.
Then it was time for the full-on gay-hatin'.
\u201c"He's the gay guy, so we gotta give him something, let's make him Transportation Secretary" -- unvarnished homophobia from Donald Trump Jr on Newsmax\u201d— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1677118611
Newsmax host Carl Higbie started Junior off with the sage observation that "You know, Pete has no business in that position," and the failson was off and running:
But, you know, he’s the guy who had no business running for president but they let him do that cause he was gay and they check off a box and then he didn’t win, so "he’s the gay guy, so we gotta give him something, let’s make him transportation secretary," what does he know about it? NOTHING! His failure, after failure, after failure are truly affecting the American people.
Just to make clear that Buttigieg is a feminine not-man, Junior also came back to the rightwing meme about Buttigieg's paternity leave after adopting twin babies, mocking “the time he spent chest-feeding while we were in the midst of a supply chain crisis." Haha, can you just imagine that little unmanly wimp trying to feed a baby?!
MORE: How Donald Trump's Sociopathic Parenting Made Donald Trump Jr. The Winner He Is Today
As we all know, real men subject their children to emotional abuse so they'll learn how to be manly, and that's why the train crashed, the end.
[NTSB / Axios / NYDN / Insider]
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