A girl’s high school basketball game was not played Thursday night in Ohio over health concerns following the train derailment in East Palestine on February 3rd.
The Bristol girl’s varsity basketball team forfeited their game against East Palestine High School in the Div. IV sectional opener as not enough players were willing to make the trip to the game, according to multiple reports.
The health concerns came after a Norfolk Southern Railroad train carrying vinyl chloride derailed in East Palestine, Ohio, a small community located along the Ohio-Pennsylvania border.
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To prevent an explosion, the company opted to release the gas from the derailed cars, releasing potentially deadly fumes and other dangerous chemicals into the air.
“After considering the concerns of our families it has been decided that the game will not be played tonight and Bristol will unfortunately forfeit,” Bristol Local Schools Superintendent Christopher Dray said in a statement, according to The Vindicator newspaper.
“The safety of our athletes, families, and the community comes first and foremost. We are currently discussing some positive ideas to provide some fun and closure for our team with the season ending. OHSAA will be in charge of refunding the balance of any tickets purchased so please reach out to them directly if you need a refund.”
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Bristol attempted to get the game moved to a neutral site, but the Ohio High School Athletic Association said the game had to be played in East Palestine.
“Local, state and federal health officials have determined that East Palestine High School can safely open and host extra-curricular activities. Therefore, the girls basketball tournament game vs. Bristol High School will remain at East Palestine, as scheduled,” OHSAA director of media relations Tim Stried said Thursday in a statement.
OHSAA ruled the game a no-contest.
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The boy’s basketball game between East Palestine and Wellsville is still on for Friday night, according to WKBN Youngstown.
On Friday, officials said the Biden administration would be sending medical personnel and toxicologists to East Palestine to conduct public health testing and assessments.
Fox News’ Brooke Singman contributed to the report.