Government Action

Rail Industry Had Safety Technology Decades Ago

Rail Industry Had Safety Technology Decades Ago

November 4, 2015 | The New York Times |WASHINGTON — In 1981, while traveling on a corporate jet, Richard M. Bressler, the chairman of the Burlington Northern Railroad, hit on an idea: What if the technology used by airlines to track the location of planes and help prevent accidents was applied to the rail industry? […]

By November 4, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
Audit Finds Montana Railroad Safety Lacking as Oil Traffic Rises

Audit Finds Montana Railroad Safety Lacking as Oil Traffic Rises

October 30, 2015 | The Wall Street Journal | HELENA, Mont.—Montana’s oversight of railroad safety falls short at a time when crude-oil train traffic from the Bakken region, already high, is only expected to increase, a new audit found. Montana has no active rail-safety plan and employs only two inspectors to cover the state, the […]

By November 1, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
Dayton’s angry letter highlights missed opportunity to improve oil-train safety

Dayton’s angry letter highlights missed opportunity to improve oil-train safety

October 31, 2015 | Star Tribune | Railroads, with the help of mostly Republican legislative allies, handily derailed Gov. Mark Dayton’s ambitious oil-train safety initiative last session — a package that would have assessed the state’s four major haulers $330 million over 10 years to improve rail crossings throughout the state. But the bristling tone […]

By November 1, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
Goodview pitches train quiet zone to state lawmakers

Goodview pitches train quiet zone to state lawmakers

October 28, 2015 | Winona Daily News | Goodview’s leaders took the city’s long-desired whistle-free train zone plan directly to the state Tuesday, when the Senate’s Capital Investment Committee visited the area to look at projects the Legislature will consider funding in 2016. Like the House’s Capital Investment Committee, which visited earlier this fall, the […]

By October 28, 2015 0 Comments Read More →

NYS announces latest oil train safety checks

October 28, 2015 | Times Union | Gov. Andrew Cuomo today announced  another round of targeted crude oil tank car and rail inspections that examined 235 crude oil tank cars, approximately 195 miles of track and 72 switches. State and federal safety inspectors found six so-called “critical defects,” which required immediate repair, and another 80 […]

By October 28, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
Deadline for train safety technology undercut by industry lobbying

Deadline for train safety technology undercut by industry lobbying

October 28, 2015 | The Washington Post | Until a train barreled off the tracks at 9:26 p.m. on May 12, it had been business as usual on Capitol Hill. Among the bills quietly making their way toward a final vote was one that would postpone by several years a multibillion- dollar safety-enhancement deadline facing the railroad […]

By October 28, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
Few Railroads On Track To Meet End-Of-Year Safety Deadline

Few Railroads On Track To Meet End-Of-Year Safety Deadline

October 23, 2015 | NPR | Railroads warn they may have to shut down unless Congress extends an end-of-the-year deadline to install new safety equipment called Positive Train Control. PTC is a complex system that monitors a train’s location and speed, then automatically slows down or stops a locomotive if the engineer doesn’t respond to […]

By October 25, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
House bill could shield oil train spill response plans from disclosure

House bill could shield oil train spill response plans from disclosure

October 16, 2015 | McClatchy DC| WASHINGTON A House of Representatives bill unveiled Friday could make it more difficult for the public to know how prepared railroads are for responding to oil spills from trains, their worst-case scenarios and how much oil is being transported by rail through communities. [Read the entire article here.]

By October 17, 2015 0 Comments Read More →

Firefighting foam to be deployed along NY oil train routes

October 14, 2015|Post Star| ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Firefighting foam used to fight oil train spills and fires is being deployed to 19 cities across New York state. The foam concentrate is stored in trailers along with equipment needed to apply the foam to an oil spill. The foam forms a blanket over oil spills […]

By October 14, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
Tests showed rail defect 2 months before W.Va. oil train derailed

Tests showed rail defect 2 months before W.Va. oil train derailed

October 9, 2015 | McClatchy DC| WASHINGTON Two separate tests in the two months prior to a fiery oil train derailment in West Virginia earlier this year showed the presence of a rail defect, according to a report on the incident. But neither the railroad nor the contractor who did the tests followed up on […]

By October 9, 2015 0 Comments Read More →