The legacy media networks NBC, ABC, and CBS have only ended up covering the horrendous Norfolk Southern train derailment that has caused extreme issues and what seems to be an ecological disaster in East Palestine, Ohio, that has resulted in threats to the health of the millions that live in the Ohio River Basin for less than half an hour combined across all of the networks.
Both local and state authorities elected to evacuate all of the people that live in a one-mile radius of the crash site back on February 3rd and initiated a controlled burn to try and deal with the leaked highly caustic industrial chemicals in an effort to reduce the chances of an explosion taking place. The main chemical leaking was vinyl chloride, a highly carcinogenic mix used to create PVC, which was released from five total train cars in the form of gigantic plumes of acrid smoke which could be seen from both eastern Ohio and western Pennsylvania.
Analysts out of the Media Research Center looked into all broadcasted coverage of the incident which was given to the incident between February 4 and February 14; It was concluded by the conservative-based nonprofit that the three main networks “fell just shy of a combined 30 minutes” when it came to the disaster. This broke down to CBS devoted 9 minutes and 53 seconds of total airtime to the scandal, while ABC had 9 minutes and 31 seconds, followed by NBC with 8 minutes and 52 seconds.
The people of East Palestine were informed they could once again head back to their homes after just under a week from the time of the controlled burn. Ever since that point both residents and first responders have since been reporting to government officials a bevy of concerning health issues such as sore throats, headaches, coughing, and diarrhea. Still, the outlets have seemingly refused to give the issue any more reporting time with CBS offering up an additional minute and four seconds, while NBC gave the horrid issue a staggering 38 seconds and ABC still has not opted to speak on it again.
“Rather than healthy skepticism, reporters approached statements by Norfolk Southern and the Ohio EPA, both of whom had a blatant incentive to downplay the seriousness of the situation, with slavish credulity,” expressed analysts for the Media Research Center. “Perhaps this explains why they haven’t gone back to the story: because they abandoned it too early before asking any meaningful questions. For the broadcast networks to revisit East Palestine now would be to admit that their prior abandonment of it was an error born out of laziness and a lack of curiosity.”
Sen. J.D. Vance (R-OH) noted during a recent Fox News interview with host Tucker Carlson that these legacy outlets have only given the bare minimum attention required to the ongoing disaster. He claimed that they are already prone to ignoring issues when it comes to middle America, adding that most reporters are entirely unwilling to pose questions to government agencies about the scope of the disaster.
“I think that the entire country, the media complex, the leaders of this country, have decided to disregard the people of East Palestine,” he concluded. “If you look at the way that this story has been covered, if it’s been covered at all, it’s about how there are poor people in East Palestine who have been victimized by this disaster. Well of course that’s true, but you want journalists asking tough questions about what’s going on.”