Some get answers, some leave frustrated after East Palestine town hall
Nearly two weeks since the train disaster in East Palestine, the aftermath remains fluid. The same could be said about Wednesday's informational meeting officials had planned.
They initially advertised a town hall style.
A line two blocks long stretched out the door before it started.
By then, it had become more like a science fair, with booths inside the high school gym for folks to get information and answers.
"At one point, mayor Trent Conaway had everyone ushered into the bleachers after addressing a few questions from a slew of local and national press.
"We need our citizens to feel safe in their own homes," he said.
While some shouted questions, others like Mark Turcola simply left, just as frustrated as they came.
"I don't think anybody's getting answers out there," he said. "I asked EPA what did I drive through," describing a fog over a lake on his way to work in the days after the incident. "Nobody knows...I live outside the evacuation zone, I had no issues until I drove to work Tuesday morning."
Another woman who didn't want to talk on camera told 21 News she didn't learn anything new.
Others, however, did.
The Sirotas got there early enough to go through each information booth before the format's last-minute change.
"The EPA, county health department...we had specific questions," said Steve Sirota. "Our concern was they're going to test once, say it's good and wash their hands of it, but no, they assured us they'd continue testing long into the future."
And despite best efforts, a future that for many in this village of 4,700 remains uncertain.