Fact Check

Does Pic Show a 2nd Norfolk Southern Train Derailment in Ohio?

A third Norfolk Southern train crashed in Cleveland soon after this March 2023 incident, killing one person.

Published Mar 7, 2023

 (Reddit Screenshot/Photo from MediaPunch)
Image Via Reddit Screenshot/Photo from MediaPunch
On March 6, 2023, a picture posted to Reddit authentically showing another Norfolk Southern train derailment in Ohio after the Feb. 3 derailment in East Palestine.

On March 6, 2023, a picture was posted to Reddit claiming to show another Norfolk Southern train derailment in Ohio, roughly a month after a train carrying toxic chemicals derailed in East Palestine, Ohio. We found the photographic authentic.

The Reddit post was captioned, "A second Norfolk Southern Train derails in Ohio, just a month after the East Palestine derailment." The post had nearly 100,000 points at the time of publication, making it one of the most popular posts that day.

The Norfolk Southern train derailed near Springfield, Ohio on March 4, with 28 cars jumping the tracks. No one was injured. The train was not carrying toxic materials.

We found an identical photo on MediaPunch, taken the day before the picture was posted on Reddit. We've used the website before to help authenticate viral photographs. On MediaPunch, the photo is captioned as follows: 

SPRINGFIELD, OH - MARCH 5: Aerial view of a Norfolk Southern Train Derailment leaving 20 cars jumping the tracks on the previous day In Springfield, Ohio. March 5, 2023. Credit: mpi34/MediaPunch

The Springfield derailment came after a Norfolk Southern train carrying hazardous materials derailed in East Palestine, Ohio, on Feb. 3. The toxic chemicals in that incident had to be released using a controlled burn, which led many people to worry about the health and ecological effects of the crash. 

More major train derailments around the U.S. after the March 4 crash. In Cleveland, a Norfolk Southern train collided with a truck on March 7. That crash killed one person, who was an employee of the company.

Local broadcast station Fox 8 found that since October 2022, five Norfolk Southern trains have derailed in Ohio. According to PolitiFact, more than 1,000 train accidents happen every year in the U.S.


Belle, Cris. "A Look at Ohio's 5 Train Derailments in Recent Months." Fox 8 Cleveland WJW, 6 Mar. 2023, https://fox8.com/news/a-look-at-ohios-5-train-derailments-in-recent-months/.

Czopek, Madison. "Ask PolitiFact: We've seen reports of three train derailments this month. Is this normal?" PolitiFact, 16 Feb. 2023, https://www.politifact.com/article/2023/feb/16/ask-politifact-weve-seen-reports-of-three-train-de/.

LaMagdeleine, Izz Scott. "2023 Ohio Train Derailment: Fact-Checking the Crash." Snopes, 16 Feb. 2023, https://www.snopes.com/collections/ohio-train-derailment-2023/.

Langenfeld, Danielle. "Norfolk Southern Conductor Killed in CLE Train Crash." Fox 8 Cleveland WJW, 7 Mar. 2023, https://fox8.com/news/norfolk-southern-employee-killed-in-cle-train-crash/.

Liles, Jordan. "Striking Photo of Ohio Train Derailment Posted to Reddit." Snopes, 14 Feb. 2023, https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/ohio-train-derailment-reddit-post/.

Norfolk Southern Train Derailment In Springfield, Ohio | MediaPunch. https://mediapunch.photoshelter.com/image/I0000cn9GzxYuawE. Accessed 7 Mar. 2023.

Olson, Emily. "Another Norfolk Southern Train Derails in Ohio." NPR, 6 Mar. 2023. NPR, https://www.npr.org/2023/03/06/1161262824/train-derailment-springfield-ohio.

Trombly, Monroe & Nguyen, Thao. "Headaches, Coughing, Burning of the Skin: Symptoms Ohio Residents Have Experienced after Toxic Train Derailment." USA TODAY, https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2023/03/06/east-palestine-residents-health-norfolk-southern-train-derailment/11415726002/. Accessed 7 Mar. 2023.

Izz Scott LaMagdeleine is a fact-checker for Snopes.