Powerful Dem Presses for Safer Crude-by-Rail Shipments

Scorched oil tankers remain on July 10, 2013 at the train derailment site in Lac-Megantic, Quebec. Edward Bukhardt, CEO of Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railways Inc.,(MMA) told reporters Wednesday that the train was left running while the engineer spent the night sleeping in a hotel in Nantes, adding that the engineer was following standard 'industry practice.' The train carrying crude oil from North Dakota derailed in the town of Lac-Megantic overnight Friday, causing a massive fire and explosions that killedat least 15 people, with another 45 still missing.
National Journal
Ben Geman
Jan. 7, 2014, 1:41 a.m.

Sen. Chuck Schu­mer, D-N.Y., is step­ping up pres­sure on fed­er­al reg­u­lat­ors to toughen safety stand­ards for rail cars car­ry­ing crude oil fol­low­ing a string of ac­ci­dents, Re­u­ters re­ports.

Schu­mer, a mem­ber of the Sen­ate Demo­crat­ic lead­er­ship team, is call­ing on the Trans­port­a­tion De­part­ment to com­plete a rule that will force car­ri­ers to phase out or ret­ro­fit their rail cars, the news ser­vice re­ports.

“There are ser­i­ous safety con­cerns about the rail cars that carry this oil and the risk they pose to the lives of New York­ers, to our in­fra­struc­ture, and our en­vir­on­ment,” he said Monday.

A re­cent de­rail­ment and ex­plo­sion in North Dakota, where oil pro­duc­tion is boom­ing, is the latest of sev­er­al ac­ci­dents in­volving trains car­ry­ing crude oil.

Na­tion­al Journ­al‘s Clare For­an has more on that here.