Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
September 19, 2014

Greg Saxton of the Greenbrier Companies on the Need for Safer Rail Tank Cars

In an opinion piece for Roll Call, Greg Saxton, chief engineer for The Greenbrier Companies, a leading railroad industry supplier, argues that the Transportation Department ought to require more robust tank car designs given the risks of explosions and oil spills as newly abundant domestic crude oil is shipped around the country to refineries and terminals.

“Unfortunately, the Department of Transportation has yet to mandate design improvements that would enhance the safety of tank cars,” he writes.

Here at The Container we’ve reported on the boom in rail shipments of domestic crude, especially from the Bakken formation in North Dakota, and on safety concerns that local communities have about this new rail traffic.

The energy, railroad, and other industries are eagerly awaiting a pending rule from the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, which could come as early as this week on rail shipment of oil.

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