Program continues to keep Graniteville community safe after '05 train wreck

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News 12 at 11 o'clock / Saturday, May 4, 2013

GRANITEVILLE, S.C. (WRDW) -- It's a disaster no one in the small town of Graniteville likes to remember.

But Louisiana Sanders says she remembers it like it was yesterday.

"I got a phone call from my daughter, telling me to look at the news on television," she told News 12.

She was watching coverage of the disaster as it unfolded, and much of what she saw looked like it was right out of a movie.

The trains were carrying chlorine gas, causing long-term health problems for people even lived miles away from where the trains cars collided.

"They were passing oxygen masks to them," Sanders said.

And ever since, investigators are studying just how big that impact was.

"To find out what the needs were, what health problems the community was having as well as economic problems," she said.

The program, Healthy You, Healthy Graniteville, is all about community health.

"We have someone here from DHEC to be kind of be responsive to what the needs are in the community," said Lucy Annang, who works with the program.

And even though it's been eight years, she knows things won't get back to normal anytime soon.

"What we find is that people are still continuing to be devastated by the economic decline, things like the decline in the physical environment and even some mental health or what some might call PTS," Annang said.

But despite all of those issues, she says people still want to see the community improve.

Because at the end of the day, Graniteville is still home.

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