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Keyword: rail

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  • Routes for proposed Houston-Dallas bullet trains unveiled

    10/23/2014 6:06:57 AM PDT · by thackney · 64 replies
    Houston Chronicle ^ | October 20, 2014 | Dug Begley
    Observers have long known that only a few options were available for the route of the privately funded high-speed train line between Houston and Dallas. Now a firmer picture of where the trains might run is emerging. (Photo courtesy of JR Central) (Photo courtesy of JR Central) As part of the federally required process to evaluate the line, the Federal Railroad Administration and Texas Department of Transportation released maps of the nine routes they are considering and the two chosen for deeper evaluation. The lines that didn’t make the final cut seem to be a bit longer, or else have...
  • Met Council board not big transit riders, survey finds

    10/21/2014 5:13:51 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 4 replies
    Star Tribune ^ | 10-20-14 | Eric Roper
    Most members of the Metropolitan Council rarely use the public transportation system they are in charge of overseeing, based on transit pass usage and a Star Tribune survey of the 17-member body. Met Council members receive a free transit pass as part of their appointments to the board. Information obtained through an open records request shows that 10 of those passes were never used in the past year. Five council members swiped their cards between 10 and 21 times, while just two registered more than 70 rides. By comparison, a full year of two-way weekday commutes would rack up closer...
  • (BREAKING) 35 injured, 5 critical in Arkansas train collision, report says

    10/16/2014 11:44:42 AM PDT · by dware · 10 replies
    Fox News ^ | 10.16.2014 | FoxNews.com
    A passenger train collided with a freight train Thursday in northwest Arkansas injuring 35, five critically, 5NewsOnline.com reported. The incident occurred at about 10:30 a.m. and involved four passenger cars carrying 44 people. Emergency responders were at the scene in Washington County and transported 31 to local hospitals, the report said.
  • Dayton, senators seek federal action on railroad delays

    10/14/2014 5:19:25 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 15 replies
    Pioneer Press ^ | 10-13-14 | Don Davis
    DULUTH, Minn. -- Minnesota's leaders want federal help to ease railroad delays. U.S. Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken and Gov. Mark Dayton on Monday sent a letter to the head of the Surface Transportation Board saying that rail delays are hurting many parts of the economy. "As we watch winter come to the state of Minnesota, we have become increasingly alarmed by the service failures of several railroads that serve critical industries in our state," the three Democrats wrote to board Chairman Daniel Elliott. And on Tuesday, Dayton holds what is expected to be the last of a series...
  • More oil trains heading to N.J.

    10/06/2014 7:15:06 AM PDT · by thackney · 20 replies
    NorthJersey.com ^ | October 5, 2014 | SCOTT FALLON
    The owner of the state’s largest refinery is investing heavily in rail transportation to haul oil across the country to its Linden plant, ensuring that more trains carrying millions of gallons of volatile Bakken crude will be traveling through New Jersey. The Houston-based energy giant Phillips 66 recently opened a new rail facility at its Bayway Refinery and began accepting shipments of crude in August. The company intends to build its own rail shipping center near the abundant oil fields of North Dakota and plans to almost double its rail fleet to 3,700 tanker cars to bring more oil to...
  • Rail congestion 'crisis' related to Bakken oil likely to be long-term problem

    10/02/2014 7:03:29 AM PDT · by thackney · 14 replies
    MinnPost ^ | 10/01/14 | Brian Lambert
    The rate of North Dakota oil trains crossing Minnesota got another working over yesterday. At KMSP-TV, Tim Blotz says, “Bakken oil now rolls through Minnesota at a rate of more than 15 trains a day, but on a rail system that has limited space, other critical freight — including grain, Taconite, and propane — is often left off track. Rep. Joe Atkins, of Inver Grove Heights, described the issue as ‘a growing crisis’ at a packed legislative hearing. Even so, it's not a simple blame game. … The troubles for Amtrak aren't just the delays, but the length of them....
  • Oil, Rail Industries Want 7 Years To Fix Tank Cars

    10/01/2014 7:23:30 AM PDT · by thackney · 32 replies
    AP via Rig Zone ^ | September 30, 2014 | Joan Lowy
    The oil and railroad industries are urging U.S. regulators to allow them as long as seven years to retrofit existing tank cars that transport highly volatile crude oil, a top oil industry official said Tuesday. The cars have ruptured and spilled oil during collisions, leading to intense fires... ...jointly asking the Department of Transportation for six to 12 months for rail tank car manufacturers to gear up to retrofit tens of thousands of cars and another three years to retrofit older cars.... ...also want three years after that to retrofit newer tank cars manufactured since 2011, known as "1232 cars,"......
  • Suncor sends its first tanker of Western Canada heavy crude to Europe

    09/24/2014 10:32:24 AM PDT · by thackney · 23 replies
    Reuters ^ | Sep 23, 2014 | Reuters
    Canada's largest oil and gas producer, Suncor Energy Inc, is shipping its first ever tanker of Western Canadian heavy crude from Canada's East Coast to Europe, a company spokeswoman said on Tuesday. Suncor spokeswoman Sneh Seetal confirmed Reuters shipping data that shows the aframax tanker Minerva Gloria was set to pick up a cargo of crude oil from the port of Sorel-Tracy on the St. Lawrence River in Quebec. Seetal declined to comment on where in Europe the crude cargo is going, citing commercial confidentiality. According to Reuters data it will be discharged in the Mediterranean. The crude was delivered...
  • Dangers Aside, Railways Reshape Crude Market

    09/23/2014 1:05:22 PM PDT · by thackney · 31 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | Sept. 21, 2014 | RUSSELL GOLD and CHESTER DAWSON
    In May 2008, a locomotive with a grizzly bear painted on its side pulled into a railroad siding next to an abandoned grain elevator in the ghost town of Dore, N.D. The engine, property of the Yellowstone Valley Railroad, hitched up a couple of tank cars of crude from nearby oil wells and set off on a thousand-mile journey to Oklahoma. Dore would never be the same—and neither would the U.S. energy industry. Until then, most oil pumped in North America moved around the continent in pipelines. Suddenly, and just as the oil industry began a period of unprecedented growth,...
  • Environmentalists Sue over Crude-by-Rail

    09/15/2014 8:45:16 PM PDT · by Citizen Zed · 32 replies
    Breitbart ^ | 9-15-2014 | WILLIAM BIGELOW
    The environmental group Earthjustice, funded by George Soros and joined by the Sierra Club and ForestEthics, is suing the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) in order to prevent crude oil from North Dakota’s Bakken formation to be moved to California. The suit is reportedly in reaction the Kern County Board of Supervisors’ approval last Tuesday of Alon USA Energy's plan to expand the rail terminal at its Bakersfield, CA refinery. The expansion of the terminal would create the state’s largest crude-by-rail facility and allow the terminal to import five times as much crude oil by train as it already does, Earthjustice is also claiming...
  • Senators chide freight railroads on delays

    09/11/2014 5:36:45 AM PDT · by thackney · 55 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | September 10, 2014 | Associated Press
    Senators and shippers complained Wednesday that widespread delays in freight rail shipments are hurting a wide array of industries and driving some companies out of business, and they expressed doubt that the railroad companies are doing all they can to fix the problem. The delays, which escalated late last year and continued through the spring and summer, appear to be the result of too few rail cars and too much demand from shippers, officials representing the agriculture, auto and chemical industries told a hearing of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee. Lawmakers displayed a photo of a giant mound...
  • Crude oil rail shipments set record pace

    09/05/2014 5:02:30 AM PDT · by thackney · 16 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | September 4, 2014 | Michael Brick
    Rail shipments of crude oil rose to 119,634 carloads in the most recent fiscal quarter, an increase of more than 10 percent over the 106,605 shipments in the comparable period last year, according to figures released Thursday by the American Association of Railroads. The association, an industry trade group, called it the busiest quarter ever for crude oil shipments by rail. In the single month of August, shipments rose 25 percent compared to the previous August. Shipments of other commodities showed more modest gains. As oil production has soared past pipeline capacity, trains have become a favored alternative for the...
  • US rail chiefs in plea on grain delays

    09/05/2014 4:59:38 AM PDT · by thackney · 27 replies
    Financial Times ^ | September 4, 2014 | Robert Wright
  • 5 protesters blocking oil train arrested

    09/03/2014 4:58:08 AM PDT · by thackney · 27 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | September 2, 2014 | Associated Press
    Five people have been arrested after demonstrated blocked railroad tracks at a Burlington Northern Santa Fe yard in Everett. Railroad spokesman Gus Melonas says two women and three men were taken to the Snohomish County Jail after refusing to leave a protest of train shipments of oil and coal and proposed export terminals in the Northwest... The group Rising Tide Seattle erected a tripod of poles over the tracks with a woman perched on top....
  • Rail deliveries of U.S. oil continue to increase in 2014

    08/28/2014 12:09:11 PM PDT · by thackney · 4 replies
    Energy Information Administration ^ | 8/28/2015 | Energy Information Administration
    The amount of crude oil and refined petroleum products moved by U.S. railroads increased 9% during the first seven months of this year compared with the same period in 2013. In July, monthly average carloadings of oil and petroleum products were near 16,000 carloads per week, according to the Association of American Railroads (AAR). The increase in oil volumes transported by rail reflects rising U.S. crude oil production, which reached an estimated 8.5 million barrels per day in June for the first time since July 1986. AAR estimates that more than half of the nearly 460,000 carloads tracked in its...
  • Train delayed again? Blame the oil boom.

    08/28/2014 5:13:33 AM PDT · by thackney · 19 replies
    Christian Science Monitor ^ | AUGUST 27, 2014 | Jared Gilmour
    If you’re stuck at a railroad crossing or trapped on a delayed Amtrak train, you might blame it on the US oil boom. US oil production is the highest in decades, and more and more crude is traveling by train. That is slowing shipments of grains, gravel, and even coal, as commodities and a resurgent oil industry compete for a finite amount of US rail. More oil pipelines could help ease the freight bottleneck, but those take time to build and have become controversial topics in the debate over the future of US energy. In the meantime, firms are taking...
  • Grain Piles Up, Waiting for a Ride, as Trains Move North Dakota Oil

    08/26/2014 8:57:37 AM PDT · by reaganaut1 · 34 replies
    New York Times ^ | August 25, 2014 | RON NIXON
    FARGO, N.D. — The furious pace of energy exploration in North Dakota is creating a crisis for farmers whose grain shipments have been held up by a vast new movement of oil by rail, leading to millions of dollars in agricultural losses and slower production for breakfast cereal giants like General Mills. The backlog is only going to get worse, farmers said, as they prepared this week for what is expected to be a record crop of wheat and soybeans. “If we can’t get this stuff out soon, a lot of it is simply going to go on the ground...
  • Investigators release Quebec train disaster report

    08/20/2014 6:27:56 AM PDT · by thackney · 14 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | August 19, 2014 | Associated Press
    The weak safety culture of a now-defunct railway company and poor government oversight were among the many factors that led to an oil train explosion that killed 47 people in Quebec last year, Canada’s Transportation Safety Board said in a new report released Tuesday. TSB chair Wendy Tadros said 18 factors played a role, including a rail company that cut corners and a Canadian regulator that didn’t do proper safety audits. The safety board issued its report 13 months after a runaway train carrying 72 carloads of volatile oil from North Dakota derailed, hurtled down an incline and slammed into...
  • Amtrak train leaves Penn Station for Washington, D.C., without its passengers [High-Speed Train]

    08/04/2014 5:25:58 PM PDT · by george76 · 29 replies
    NEW YORK DAILY NEWS ^ | August 3, 2014 | Rich Schapiro
    Scores of travelers were stranded after the Acela Express 2253 took off from one platform about 3 p.m. — while they were waiting at another and unaware the train was leaving them behind. An Amtrak train bound for Washington pulled away from Penn Station on Saturday without some pretty important cargo: its passengers. ... They literally sent us to the wrong platform, and the conductor took off without any passengers,” said Damien Miano, 60, of Chelsea. “The right hand didn’t know what the left hand was doing. It was just so bizarre.” Miano said he and the other abandoned travelers...
  • Boeing fuselages in Montana river after train derails

    07/05/2014 1:58:16 PM PDT · by FlJoePa · 69 replies
    KING 5 News ^ | 7-5-14 | n/a
    SUPERIOR, MT -- A train derailed near Superior Thursday, sending Boeing aircraft fuselages into a river. Nineteen cars on the westbound train derailed. Three of the cars contained aircraft parts and ended up in the Clark Fork River. Boeing said the train was headed from Spirit Aerosystems in Wichita to the Boeing final assembly plant in Renton. No one was hurt. The cause is under investigation. Boeing said the Burlington Northern Santa Fe train was carrying six 737 fuselages, fuselage panels and a lower lobe for the 777, and a leading edge flight surface for the 747. Boeing says it...
  • Kill Keystone Pipeline And You Kill Americans

    06/11/2014 5:22:38 PM PDT · by jazusamo · 8 replies
    Investors.com ^ | June 11, 2014 | IBD Editorial
    Energy: As a big Dem donor talks of pipeline terrorism, new federal reports warn that killing Keystone XL will overburden rail transport of oil and result in more frequent and deadlier environmental disasters. Environmentalists who claim that the Keystone pipeline from Canada represents an unprecedented environmental threat ignore that the pipeline would pose no greater danger than the more than 50,000 existing miles of safely operating pipeline already crisscrossing the U.S. They also ignore the very real and growing environmental danger in the only viable alternate for transporting oil — by rail. Keystone would not only carry oil from Canada...
  • Crude-by-rail transportation provides Bakken Shale production access to major markets

    06/10/2014 1:00:43 PM PDT · by thackney · 3 replies
    Energy Information Administration ^ | JUNE 10, 2014 | Energy Information Administration
    As onshore crude oil production in the United States increased over the past few years, producers have increasingly moved crude oil out of production areas by rail. Producers in North Dakota, in particular, have used rail to ship crude oil to refineries and midstream companies at newly built unloading terminals on the East Coast and West Coast. The number of rail carloads of crude oil began rising in 2012, as production in the Bakken Shale and other shale plays grew. According to the North Dakota Pipeline Authority, Bakken rail outflow capacity totaled 965,000 barrels per day (bbl/d) at the end...
  • Vancouver City Council opposes oil train terminal

    06/04/2014 5:26:31 AM PDT · by thackney · 5 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | June 3, 2014 | Associated Press
    <p>The Vancouver City Council has voted to oppose what would be the Pacific Northwest’s largest crude oil train terminal.</p> <p>The vote came well after midnight on Tuesday in council chambers packed with hundreds of people, many of them opposed to the project.</p>
  • Canada crude-by-rail exports reach record high of 160,000 bpd

    05/27/2014 5:22:53 AM PDT · by thackney · 18 replies
    Reuters | May 26, 2014 | Reuters
    Canadian exports of crude oil by rail hit a record high of 160,000 barrels per day in the first quarter of 2014, Canada's National Energy Board says, a more than 50 percent rise from the same period a year earlier. Canada shipped 160,164 bpd out of the country by rail between January and March, a sharp rise from the first quarter of 2013, when it exported 105,632 bpd, the NEB said on Friday. The first-quarter figure was a 7 percent increase from the final quarter of 2013, when 149,479 bpd were exported by rail. The crude-by-rail boom in Canada has...
  • Lac-Mégantic train disaster leads to charges against MMA Railway and three employees

    05/13/2014 6:20:41 AM PDT · by thackney · 2 replies
    National Post ^ | May 12, 2014 | Tristin Hopper
    Lac-Mégantic train disaster leads to charges against Montreal Maine and Atlantic Railway and three employees Nearly one year after a runaway train killed 47 people in the Eastern Townships community of Lac-Mégantic, Que., prosecutors have laid criminal negligence charges against the railway and three employees connected to the disaster, including the train’s lone engineer. On Monday, a spokesman for Quebec’s director of criminal and penal prosecutions said 47 counts of criminal negligence causing death had been filed against engineer Thomas Harding, manager of train operations Jean Demaitre, railway traffic controller Richard Labrie, as well as the Montreal Maine and Atlantic...
  • Communist China Planning Direct Rail Connection to AK-Canada-Lower 48 via Bering Strait Tunnel (!)

    05/13/2014 3:03:13 AM PDT · by Reaganite Republican · 27 replies
    Reaganite Republican ^ | 13 May 2014 | Reaganite Republican
    Apparently they seek to lower the cost of dominating our markets while keeping a tight leash on a rudderless debtor and efficiently extracting benefits/wealth from Chinese properties (and powerful traitors) in the USA.  Maybe you 2x Obama voters didn't expect hopenchange to include being sold into economic slavery, yet here we are... thanks, idiots! A Bering Strait tunnel and/or bridge has been actually been proposed at various times, going back to 1892, and most often by the Russians. Moscow says they are still currently planning a bridge project for $65B, yet experts doubt that their conventional rail approach -if ever actualized- would be able...
  • Why don't Americans ride trains?

    05/09/2014 9:49:39 PM PDT · by Cronos · 340 replies
    The Economist ^ | 29 Aug 2013 | Economist
    AMERICA has by far the largest rail network in the world, with more than twice as much track as China. But it lags far behind other first-world countries in ridership. Instead of passengers, most of America's massive rail network is used to carry freight. Why don't Americans ride trains? ..the Japanese, the Swiss, the French, the Danes, the Russians, the Austrians, the Ukrainians, the Belarussians and the Belgians all accounted for more than 1,000 passenger-kilometres by rail in 2011; Americans accounted for 80. Amtrak carries 31m passengers per year. Mozambique's railways carried 108m passengers in 2011. There are many reasons...
  • Amtrak train strikes, kills person in Connecticut

    05/09/2014 9:42:41 PM PDT · by george76 · 24 replies
    WCVB-TV ^ | May 09, 2014
    Amtrak train en route from Boston to Washington. ... It was the second accident involving an Amtrak train in Connecticut this week. An Amtrak Acela Express struck and killed a man in Groton on Monday.
  • Another Oil Train Explodes in Town; River Contaminated: Who Wants Keystone Now?

    05/02/2014 5:09:14 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 18 replies
    Townhall.com ^ | May 2, 2014 | John Ransom
    Another major derailment of a train carrying oil through a town in the U.S. has caused the evacuation of 300 people, with oil washing into the James River in Virginia, which feeds into the Chesapeake Bay.
  • Cuomo seeks immediate action on oil-train safety issues [Warren Buffett shakedown]

    05/01/2014 7:00:13 AM PDT · by Fitzy_888 · 13 replies
    Gannett ^ | April 30, 2014 | Brian Tumulty
    WASHINGTON — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo urged the White House Wednesday to give "immediate attention'' to safety issues involving the increased use of freight trains to transport crude oil. He made his comments just hours before the latest derailment in Lynchburg, Va. Cuomo later said the accident and other recent derailments are "a startling pattern that underscores the need for action." "In addition to steps that states like New York are taking, the federal government must overhaul the safety regulations, starting with taking DOT-111 trains off the rails now," he said in a statement. "These trains travel through populated...
  • Train carrying crude derails in Virginia, bursts into flame

    04/30/2014 1:29:03 PM PDT · by markomalley · 38 replies
    A CSX Corp train carrying crude oil derailed and burst into flames in downtown Lynchburg, Virginia on Wednesday, with several tank cars spilling oil into the nearby James River, city officials said. A spokeswoman said several train cars derailed around 2 p.m. ET and there was fire and smoke at the site of the incident. Photos posted by the city online showed high flames and a large plume of black smoke. Officials said there were no reports of injuries but some 300 people in the area had been evacuated. Some 14 train cars had derailed, said JoAnn Martin, director of...
  • Train derails in downtown Lynchburg (VA)

    04/30/2014 1:18:42 PM PDT · by jazusamo · 28 replies
    The News & Advance ^ | April 30, 2014 | Staff
    Videos at source A CSX train carrying crude oil derailed Wednesday afternoon by the James River in downtown Lynchburg, sparking a massive fire that sent a thick column of black smoke high into the sky. Officials said 12 to 14 tanker cars were involved, but what caused the derailment is unclear. Three or four of the cars were breached, spilling oil into the river. Hazardous-materials crews are on scene. The incident happened shortly before 2 p.m. near Ninth and Jefferson streets. City firefighters are allowing the fire to burn out, and it has abated somewhat since the derailment. Multiple off-duty...
  • Train nearly takes out U.S. Senator [Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn) during speech on train safety]

    04/19/2014 10:27:24 PM PDT · by grundle · 23 replies
    YouTube ^ | April 19, 2014
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ircHCzcg3WY
  • Huge Big Boy steam locomotive coming back to life

    04/15/2014 4:27:36 PM PDT · by Navy Patriot · 73 replies
    Yahoo News (AP) ^ | April 15, 2014 | DAN ELLIOTT (AP)
    CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — In its prime, a massive steam locomotive known as Big Boy No. 4014 was a moving eruption of smoke and vapor, a 6,300-horsepower brute dragging heavy freight trains over the mountains of Wyoming and Utah. It's been silent for half a century, pushed aside by more efficient diesels, but now it's coming back to life. The Union Pacific Railroad is embarking on a yearslong restoration project that will put No. 4014 back to work pulling special excursion trains. "It's sort of like going and finding the Titanic or something that's just very elusive, nothing that we...
  • California to see surge in oil brought in by rail

    04/14/2014 7:56:20 AM PDT · by thackney · 13 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | April 14, 2014 | Associated Press
    California is preparing for an oil boom — brought in on rail cars. There are no pipelines that bring crude oil into California. For decades, the fuel that powers the state’s 32 million vehicles has come from tanker ships or in-state production. But government regulators predict a surge in U.S. oil production will means a steep increase in the number of trains carrying it to California refineries. The Ventura County Star reported Sunday that the increase in rail traffic will happen quickly, jumping from 9,000 carloads in 2011 to more than 200,000 carloads by 2016, according to California Energy Commission...
  • Rangeley fire chief tells Senate subcommittee people ‘vaporized’ in Quebec rail disaster

    04/13/2014 8:40:38 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 42 replies
    bangordailynews.com ^ | April 09, 2014, at 6:25 p.m. | Nick Sambides Jr., BDN Staff
    The explosion destroyed six city blocks. Several of the 30 burning buildings were incinerated. Many ruptured tanker cars were bunched together like folds in an accordion. Still others, intact, could detonate at any second, and Pellerin could tell that much of the 1.5 million gallons of spilled oil had ignited and poured through the small Quebec town like lava. Canadian firefighters told Pellerin that “they actually saw people step out of their homes and be vaporized by the [burning] oil,” Pellerin told the U.S. Senate Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee in Washington on Wednesday
  • Liquefied natural gas shows potential as a freight locomotive fuel

    04/14/2014 5:40:43 AM PDT · by thackney · 15 replies
    Energy Information Administration ^ | APRIL 14, 2014 | Energy Information Administration
    EIA projects that liquefied natural gas (LNG) will play an increasing role in powering freight locomotives in coming years. Continued growth in domestic natural gas production and substantially lower natural gas prices compared to crude oil prices could result in significant cost savings for locomotives that use LNG as a fuel source, according to EIA's Annual Energy Outlook 2014 (AEO2014). Taken together, the 7 major U.S. freight railroads consumed more than 3.6 billion gallons of diesel fuel in 2012, or 7% of all diesel fuel consumed in the United States. The fuel cost more than $11 billion in 2012 and...
  • Hodges' 1st 100 days: Building relationships, slowly and steadily ( Somali Muslims in MN )

    04/09/2014 12:59:36 PM PDT · by george76 · 18 replies
    Star Tribune ^ | April 7, 2014 | MAYA RAO
    Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges .. hours after she lost the Southwest light-rail vote, she visited a Somali mall on E. 24th Street in a blue hijab, accompanied by her Somali liaison, Abdirahman Muse. Hodges’ office said she is fulfilling many of the promises she put forth in a 100-day plan for the Somali community, including asking the city attorney for a review of small business regulations. In an upstairs room, Somali shopkeepers praised her for showing up, and poured out their concerns through translators, telling her they needed more space to park, more opportunities for idle youth, and more Somali...
  • Oil Trains Start Rumbling Into California: Expect a Fierce Political Battle

    04/03/2014 8:31:03 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 28 replies
    American Thinker ^ | 04/03/2014 | Chriss Street
    Phillips 66, formerly a division of energy giant ConocoPhillips, recently filed a project proposal to bring mile-long crude oil trains from Canada and North Dakota to its refinery in California’s San Luis Obispo County.  If approved, the project would mean up to 250 trains a year will each haul 2 million gallons of crude oil into California and travel on the same tracks used for Amtrak commuter railtrains in the San Francisco Bay Area. With oil fracking increasing America’s domestic production by 60% in the last three years, political delays in building the Keystone XL Pipeline resulted in California having the only...
  • Economist: Transport causing ‘serious logistical challenge’ for shale boom

    03/26/2014 5:55:34 AM PDT · by thackney · 6 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | March 25, 2014 | Collin Eaton
    Despite major accidents in the past year, U.S. oil companies must keep using the nation’s railroads to move crude to markets while they build a much more extensive pipeline network, an energy economics professor said Tuesday. Oil refineries on the East Coast have virtually no access to the light, sweet crude extracted in Texas’ surging oil fields because there are no pipelines to carry the oil there. It is generally too expensive to ship the crude from the Gulf Coast to buyers in the northeastern U.S. because of quirks in century-old laws, forcing refineries in New Jersey to buy oil...
  • Perpetually Indebted Amtrak Wants to Offer Free Rides

    03/16/2014 11:13:21 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 37 replies
    Townhall.com ^ | March 16, 2014 | Akash Chougule
    The multiple folds of irony are all most too much to handle. The nation’s government-run passenger rail service – which has never once in more than four decades turned a profit and relies on perpetual taxpayer handouts - plans to start offering free rides to writers. The idea, which stemmed from a New York-based writer’s tweet, will launch an official residency program for writers on its long-distance routes, coincidentally the least cost-efficient and most heavily subsidized in the Amtrak system. Amtrak is a perpetual loser, and it’s unlikely that this writers-ride-free gimmick will have a happy ending. Perhaps no government...
  • Crude oil shipments up 83 percent on US railroads

    03/14/2014 5:15:01 AM PDT · by thackney · 10 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | March 13, 2014 | Associated Press
    he number of carloads of crude oil U.S. railroads delivered last year surged 83 percent over 2012 as concerns about the shipments grow. The Association of American Railroads said Thursday the major U.S. railroads delivered 434,042 carloads of crude oil in 2013. That’s well above the 236,556 carloads of crude oil railroads delivered in 2012.
  • Trader kills self in finance world’s latest suicide

    03/12/2014 4:57:25 PM PDT · by Nachum · 30 replies
    New York Post ^ | 3/12/14 | Michael Gray March 12, 2014 | 5:45pm
    A Manhattan trader was killed Tuesday morning by a speeding Long Island Rail Road commuter train, marking at least the seventh suicide of a financial professional this year. Edmund (Eddie) Reilly, 47, a trader at Midtown’s Vertical Group, jumped in front of an LIRR train at 6 a.m. near the Syosset train station. He was declared dead at the scene. Reilly’s identity was confirmed by Salvatore Arena, an LIRR spokesperson, who said an investigation into the incident was continuing. Passengers on the west-bound express train told MTA investigators they saw a man standing by the tracks before he jumped in...
  • Bakken Crude, Rolling Through Albany

    03/02/2014 3:01:46 PM PST · by thackney · 14 replies
    New York Times ^ | FEB. 27, 2014 | JAD MOUAWAD
    ...a 600-foot oceangoing oil tanker called the Stena Primorsk left the Port of Albany on its maiden voyage down the Hudson River laden with 279,000 barrels of crude oil. It quickly ran aground on a sandbar. ...The ship’s outer hull was breached, but a second hull prevented a spill. Still, the interrupted voyage just 12 miles south of the port signaled a remarkable turnaround for the state’s capital. With little fanfare, this sleepy port has been quietly transformed into a major hub for oil shipments by trains from North Dakota and a key supplier to refiners on the East Coast....
  • Regulators hike restrictions for oil trains

    02/25/2014 1:50:09 PM PST · by thackney · 7 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | February 25, 2014 | Zain Shauk
    Regulators ratcheted up restrictions for oil trains in an emergency order on Tuesday, prohibiting rail shipments of crude from being categorized as low-risk materials. The Department of Transportation’s emergency order was the fourth issued in the last year because of derailments of trains carrying crude. It will require oil shippers to test crude oil in order to categorize it in one of the two highest risk groups of hazardous materials. Higher risk materials have lower flash points and boiling points. Recent derailments of trains carrying crude, including one in Lac-Megantic, Quebec that killed 47 people, involved crude oil that was...
  • Railroads confront crude safety

    02/21/2014 10:27:40 AM PST · by thackney · 5 replies
    AP via Fuel Fix ^ | February 21, 2014 | Matthew Brown and Joan Lowy
    Railroads that haul volatile crude shipments have reached an agreement with U.S. transportation officials to adopt wide-ranging voluntary safety measures after a string of explosive and deadly accidents. A copy of the agreement between the U.S. Transportation Department and the Association of American Railroads was obtained Friday by The Associated Press. It calls for railroads to slow down oil trains through major cities, increase track inspections and bolster emergency response planning along routes that carry trains hauling up to 3 million gallons of oil each. Those trains now pass regularly from oil producing areas, including the Northern Plains, to coastal...
  • Irving Oil to convert railcar fleet, remove older cars from service

    02/20/2014 5:12:36 AM PST · by thackney · 8 replies
    Calgary Herald ^ | FEBRUARY 18, 2014 | THE CANADIAN PRESS
    Irving Oil said Monday it will remove from its fleet the same type of railcar involved in the deadly train derailment in Lac-Megantic, Que., last summer. The company said it will convert its fleet of crude oil railcars to comply with U.S. standards for DOT-111 tank cars built after Oct. 1, 2011, and remove the older cars from service. Specifications set out by the Association of American Railroads call for railcars built after October 2011 to be constructed with reinforcements that have been reported to reduce the risk of product loss if the railcars derail. The Saint John-based firm said...
  • Report: US Energy Secretary Favors Reducing Oil Shipped By Rail

    02/19/2014 10:30:50 AM PST · by thackney · 11 replies
    Rig Zone ^ | February 19, 2014 | Reuters
    U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz supports reducing the amount of crude oil shipped by rail in favor of pipelines that are safer, cheaper and cleaner, Capital New York reported on Wednesday. "What we probably need is more of a pipeline infrastructure and to diminish the need for rail transport over time," he said in an interview published on the Capital New York website. He said the infrastructure is "not there" to handle the surge in North Dakota Bakken oil production from near zero to 1 million barrels per day (bpd). "Frankly, I think pipeline transport overall probably has overall a...
  • Train Accidents Stir Worries About Crude Transport

    02/18/2014 5:00:35 AM PST · by thackney · 10 replies
    AP via Rig Zone ^ | February 17, 2014 | Matthew Brown
    At least 10 times since 2008, freight trains hauling oil across North America have derailed and spilled significant quantities of crude, with most of the accidents touching off fires or catastrophic explosions. ...Experts say recent efforts to improve the safety of oil shipments belie an unsettling fact: With increasing volumes of crude now moving by rail, it's become impossible to send oil-hauling trains to refineries without passing major population centers, where more lives and property are at risk. Adding to the danger is the high volatility of the light, sweet crude from the fast-growing Bakken oil patch in Montana and...
  • Train Carrying Canadian Oil Derails, Leaks In Pennsylvania

    02/13/2014 2:26:42 PM PST · by thackney · 68 replies
    Reuters via Rig Zone ^ | February 13, 2014 | Elizabeth Dilts & Robert Gibbons
    A 120-car Norfolk Southern Corp train carrying heavy Canadian crude oil derailed and spilled in western Pennsylvania on Thursday, adding to a string of recent accidents that have prompted calls for stronger safety standards. There were no reports of injury or fire after 21 tank cars came off the track and crashed into a nearby industrial building at a bend by the Kiskiminetas River in the town of Vandergrift. Nineteen of the derailed cars were carrying oil, four of which spilled between 3,000 and 4,000 gallons of oil, Norfolk Southern said. The leaks have since been plugged. The two other...