U.S. Government

‘We dodged a bullet’: State, federal officials visit Alma derailment site, call for safety measures

‘We dodged a bullet’: State, federal officials visit Alma derailment site, call for safety measures

November 13, 2015 | Winona Daily News| ALMA, Wis. — There were no injuries and so far no signs of environmental damage after a freight train carrying ethanol went off the tracks Saturday, but state and federal officials are calling for better regulation and safety measures in the wake of two Wisconsin derailments in as […]

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Sen. Shilling, Rep. Billings ask for rail safety hearings

WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |   November 11, 2015 | WXOW| La Crosse, WI – Representative Jill Billings hosted a media event Tuesday at the railroad crossing at 27th and Cass Street in La Crosse as a call to action, urging the railroads to take responsibility for the […]

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Feds reject industry challenges to oil train safety rule

Feds reject industry challenges to oil train safety rule

November 11, 2015 | McClatch DC| WASHINGTON The U.S. Department of Transportation has rejected several appeals by industry groups to its rule issued in May on the safety of trains carrying large quantities of crude oil and ethanol. The department also agreed with tribal groups in the Pacific Northwest that had expressed concern about proposed […]

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Baldwin, FRA chief to visit Alma derailment site

Baldwin, FRA chief to visit Alma derailment site

November 11, 2015 | La Crosse Tribune | U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin and the head of the Federal Railroad Administration are expected to meet with local officials and first responders Thursday in Alma at the site of one of two Wisconsin derailments that happened over the weekend. [Read the entire article here.]

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Feds reject call for tougher fire-resistance for crude oil tank cars

Feds reject call for tougher fire-resistance for crude oil tank cars

November 10, 2015 | Chicago Tribune |Federal officials have rejected a call to toughen the fire-resistance of railroad tank cars that carry highly flammable crude oil, hundreds of which pass through the Chicago area each day. The U.S. Department of Transportation is standing by its decision issued last spring that new and retrofitted tank cars […]

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EPA Website for Alma Spill

EPA Website for Alma Spill

November 9, 2015 | EPA | When hazmat spills occur, the EPA assigns an on-scene coordinator.  The OSC provides updates to the spill on their website. For those wishing to follow EPA reports on the Alma spill, [you can follow along here.]

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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? […]

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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 […]

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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 →