April 17, 2014

BNSF crude cars spur $5 billion safety spat


A push by Warren Buffett’s railroad to boost oil-shipment safety is meeting resistance from Hess Corp. and other companies that say the plan would mean a surge in costs and force them to scrap thousands of tank cars. A series of accidents including a Quebec crash that killed 47 spurred Buffett’s BNSF Railway Co. along [...]

DOT-111 rail tank cars called ‘unacceptable’


WASHINGTON – Rail tank cars being used to ship crude oil from North Dakota’s Bakken region are an “unacceptable public risk,” and even cars voluntarily upgraded by the industry may not be sufficient, a member of the National Transportation Safety Board said Wednesday. The cars, known as DOT-111s, were involved in derailments of oil trains [...]

BNSF plans to upgrade tanker fleet after accidents


BILLINGS, Mont. – BNSF Railway Co. said Thursday (Feb. 20) it intends to buy a fleet of 5,000 strengthened tank cars to haul oil and ethanol in a move that would set a higher benchmark for safety within an industry that’s seen multiple major accidents. The voluntary step by the Texas-based subsidiary of Warren Buffett’s [...]

Rail firms to adopt safer tank cars on their own


Companies that transport massive amounts of flammable crude oil say that, after several fiery explosions, they’re not waiting for the U.S. government to issue new regulations and will replace tank cars with new safer cars as fast as they can. Two oil companies, two Canadian railroads and a tank car manufacturer all have in recent [...]

Schumer seeks to turn up heat on railcar safety


WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer on Jan. 6 called for an overhaul of old rail tank cars used to carry crude oil after a spate of explosive derailments over the past year. The New York Democrat joined a growing number of politicians concerned about the safety of transporting large volumes of oil by rail [...]

Rise of oil trains fueling concerns in small towns


WOLF POINT, Mont. – It’s tough to miss the trains hauling crude oil out of the Northern Plains. They are growing more frequent by the day, mile-long processions of black tank cars that rumble through wheat fields and towns, along rivers and national parks. As common as they have become across the U.S. and Canada, [...]