October 8, 2015

Bill aims to upgrade safety for materials sent by rail


A push for stiffer hazardous chemical rail transportation standards was made Wednesday, Sept. 2 near the site of a train accident that caused the largest evacuation in Ohio history. Local officials — recalling the 1986 Miamisburg train derailment — joined Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, as he stressed the need to pass a bill that would [...]

Train derailment prompts evacuation in Tenn.


MARYVILLE, Tenn. — A fire continued to burn Thursday afternoon at the site where a train car carrying hazardous material derailed and caught fire in eastern Tennessee, and officials said firefighters have been trying to keep neighboring rail cars cool as they make efforts to move them away from the flames. At a 4:30 p.m. [...]

BNSF faces penalty on hazmat spill reporting rules


OLYMPIA, Wash. – Washington state rail safety regulators March 19 recommended BNSF Railway Company be penalized for failing to timely report multiple hazardous material spills along state railways. The Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) issued the formal complaint following a staff investigation into BNSF’s failure to report 14 releases of various hazardous materials, including crude [...]

Report: Hazardous chemicals not on trains’ cargo lists


At least 18 times in the past three years BNSF Railway freight trains rolled west out of Minneapolis pulling cars filled with hazardous chemicals that were not on the train’s official cargo list, according to train crew complaints. That’s contrary to federal regulation because in case of an accident, local firefighters can be left in [...]

Conductor hospitalized for possible hazmat contact

BRYAN COUNTY, Okla. — A Burlington Northern Santa Fe train conductor was taken to Texoma Medical Center in Denison early Wednesday morning after he possibly came in contact with hazardous materials. Emergency crews responded to the train tracks just north of Platter Road around 3 a.m. A BNSF railroad conductor was inspecting a rail car when he [...]

Full Disclosure: What’s in those rail cars?

railyard, train yard; trains

On a dead-end street in St. Paul, Susan Juaire runs a home day care with a scenic overlook of boxcars, locomotives and railroad tracks. Though she doesn’t like it, Juaire has gotten used to the constant noise of shipping containers being loaded between trucks and trains. She can’t say the same thing about the long [...]

Hazardous cargo rides rails in secret

Jodi Ross, town manager in Westford, Mass., did not expect she would be threatened with arrest after she and her fire chief went onto the railroad tracks to find out why a train carrying liquid petroleum gas derailed on a bridge in February. But as they reached the accident site northwest of Boston, a manager [...]

Rail hazmat emergency response programs offered


The Rail Workers Hazardous Materials Training Program announces three HazMat/Chemical Emergency Response Training Programs will be held this spring in Houston, Texas. These programs address U.S. Department of Transportation and the Occupational Health and safety Administration required training in addition to procedures, levels of response and worker protection in a hazardous materials emergency or release, [...]

Agencies set public meeting on rail hazmat

The Federal Railroad Administration and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) will host a public meeting Aug. 27-28 in Washington, D.C., about the transportation of hazardous materials by rail. The two DOT agencies want to hear from stakeholders because they have begun a review of operational factors that affect the safe transportation of [...]

NLC offers ‘train-the-trainer’ hazmat course


The Rail Workers Hazardous Materials Training Program prides itself on delivering the most valuable worker safety training available. Peer instructors are members of the railroad labor community and take pride in offering the latest and most up-to-date information, teaching techniques and peer support. The goal of the rail program is to build a nationwide pool [...]