The Friday derailment roundup

Derailment after derailment. They just keep happening.

Since early February, there have been at least six train derailments in North America carrying crude from North Dakota’s Bakken Shale. These accidents have sparked increased calls from citizens, the rail industry and lawmakers for the federal government to increase safety regulations.

To keep up with these incidents and new safety regulations, PublicSource provides a roundup of stories every Friday.

 

Railroad industry files appeal to U.S. DOT crude-by-rail safety rules

The Association of American Railroads hopes its appeal will remove a requirement for electronically controlled braking systems and close a "gap in the rule that allows shippers to continue using tank cars not meeting new design specifications,” according to Progressive Railroading.

 

Safety and cost concerns conflict in new oil train rules

Environmental groups are suing the federal government because they say the rules aren’t strict enough and leave Americans at risk, while the oil industry, shippers and railroads say safety requirements are unproven and too costly, according to NPR.

 

Senators push for Obama to lift crude oil export ban

If the almost 40-year ban on crude oil exports from the U.S. gets lifted, it could mean more crude oil trains on the tracks, according to a U.S. News & World Report story.

 

How an oil train fire disrupted a North Dakotan town

The Philadelphia Inquirer explores the aftermath of a crude oil train derailment in a small town in North Dakota.

 

New Jersey lawmakers do what they can to improve train safety

Admitting that their hands are somewhat tied because crude oil trains are mostly regulated by the federal government, lawmakers in New Jersey approved three measures. One would require railroad companies that transport 200,000 gallons or more of crude oil to submit a “discharge, response and contingency plan” to the state, according to NJ.com.

 

Reach Natasha Khan at 412-315-0261 or nkhan@publicsource.org. Follow her on Twitter @khantasha.