The train company behind the crash in East Palestine, Ohio, has so far shelled out less to residents than the CEO’s annual pay.
Executives say Norfolk Southern has given $3.8 million in aid ‘directly to the citizens who are impacted by the incident’, while President and CEO Alan Shaw earned a total $4.36 million in 2021.
The figures were given in a company presentation to investors on Wednesday, in which chief financial officer Mark George claimed Norfolk Southern has been a victim of ‘disinformation’ – while revealing their insurance policy gave them coverage of up to $1.1 billion.
George told investors at the Barclays Industrial Select Conference in Miami on Wednesday that the company has ‘provided more than $6 million of direct aid to the community, $3.8 million of it so far directly to the citizens who are impacted by the incident’.
His rail freight company operated a train which derailed in the small Midwest town on February 3 spilling toxic chemicals into the surrounding air and water.
The CEO of Norfolk Southern, Alan Shaw, was paid $4.36 million in 2021 – more than the $3.8 million the company said it has given the residents of East Palestine since the crash on January 3
At a company presentation to investors in Miami on Wednesday the company told investors its insurance policy provided coverage of up to $1.1 billion
President and CEO Alan Shaw, who earned a total $4,362,801 in 2021 according to company filings, was slated to give the presentation, but George instead took the reins, saying the boss was still overseeing the cleanup in Palestine.
Shaw is likely to have earned significantly more last year, since he took the company helm after former president and CEO James Squires retired in May 2022. Squires earned $13.3 million in 2021.
George claimed the company has been victim to ‘misinformation’ – though did not specify on the call what that consisted of.
Norfolk Southern CFO Mark George claimed the company has been a victim of ‘disinformation’ but was not more specific
‘There’s a lot of misinformation that’s out there, a lot of speculation. I’d strongly encourage that all of you get your information from the NTSB [the National Transportation Safety Board], and the EPA [Environmental Protection Agency],’ he said.
The CFO sought to reassure investors on the Wednesday call that Norfolk Southern would not be financially impacted by the disaster, revealing details of their huge insurance policies.
‘We maintain insurance coverage intended for losses from incidents, such as this one,’ he said in a presentation at the Miami conference that was also broadcast online. He described ‘third party liability of $75 million of self insurance, and also $75 million of self-insurance related to first party property losses,’ adding: ‘They’re two separate policies.’
‘Our liability policy attaches to coverage losses above 75 and up to $800 million, or up to $1.1 billion for specified types,’ George said. ‘It is intended to protect against legal liabilities for bodily injury and property damage to third parties.’
He added that their insurers may still contest any claims, and that the company wouldn’t have any coverage to protect them from government fines or penalties over the derailing disaster.
Workers continue to clean up remaining tank cars in East Palestine, Ohio, on January 21, nearly three weeks after the February 3 Norfolk Southern freight train derailment
CEO of Norfolk Southern Alan Shaw taking a walk outside of his home in Atlanta, Georgia, on Sunday
Local waterways are monitored following the derailment of the train which was carrying toxic chemicals. CFO Mark George gave details on the cleanup efforts after vinyl chloride carried on the train leaked into the village’s water
The CFO also gave details on the cleanup efforts after vinyl chloride carried on the derailed train leaked into the water.
‘We have since removed more than 15,000 tons of soil and debris, and also removed over 1.1 million gallons impacted water,’ he said. ‘Additionally, we’ve taken actions installing pumps to redirect the sulfur run stream around the derailment site. We’re working with environmental experts to collect samples around the groundwater there and on the stream bank.
‘We completed nearly 500 in-home air tests in conjunction with the EPA and other government agencies. The monitoring has indicated that the air quality remains safe. Despite this we’ve provided air purifiers for residents for use in their homes. But also we purchased air purifiers for the city for use in their buildings.
‘We continue to cooperate with the NTSB on its ongoing investigation of the cause of the derailment. And the NTSB, again as the only source of reliable information on this.’
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