Keyword: rail

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  • BNSF adds new safety rules for crude oil trains

    03/31/2015 4:55:40 AM PDT · by thackney · 12 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | March 30, 2015 | Associated Press
    <p>BNSF has started taking additional safety measures for crude oil shipments because of four recent high-profile derailments in the U.S. and Canada, the railroad said Monday.</p> <p>Under the changes, BNSF is slowing down crude oil trains to 35 mph in cities with more than 100,000 people and increasing track inspections near waterways. The Fort Worth-based railroad also is stepping up efforts to find and repair defective wheels before they can cause derailments.</p>
  • Los Angeles train hits car on tracks and derails, 21 hurt

    03/28/2015 1:01:53 PM PDT · by QT3.14 · 22 replies
    KFGO ^ | March 28, 2015
    At least 21 people were hurt, two of them seriously, on Saturday when a Los Angeles commuter train struck a car that was crossing the tracks and derailed into a street near the University of Southern California campus. A silver Hyundai Sonata was left crumpled and unrecognizable following the collision, according to a Reuters witness. The lead train car jumped the tracks, crashing through a metal fence and across a grass-covered median before coming to rest in the middle of Exposition Boulevard. One person on the Metrolink train suffered serious injuries, the Los Angeles Fire Department said, and a person...
  • Chinatown businesses, supporters unhappy about impacts of high-speed rail work

    03/23/2015 3:07:25 PM PDT · by Oldeconomybuyer · 10 replies
    Fresno Bee ^ | March 22, 2015 | BY ANDREA CASTILLO
    Around 25 business owners and supporters of Fresno’s Chinatown gathered Sunday afternoon to share their concerns about the imminent high-speed rail construction along Kern and F streets. Chinatown Revitalization Inc. listed many concerns including that Spanish and Chinese speaking business owners have not been notified of the construction. Verta Gonzalez, who runs Floreria Rubi at 1515 Tulare St., said she had no idea about the coming construction. Gonzalez said business owners who speak English perhaps are able to defend themselves better. “It’s like they think Mexicans don’t matter,” she said of the rail authority. Rail authority spokeswoman Lisa Alley said...
  • As oil trains roll across America, volunteer firefighters face big risk

    03/23/2015 2:00:08 PM PDT · by Citizen Zed · 11 replies
    Reuters ^ | 3-23-2015 | EDWARD MCALLISTER
    Volunteers at the Galena, Illinois, fire department were hosing down the smoldering wreck of a derailed BNSF oil train on March 5 when a fire suddenly flared beyond their control. "They dropped the hoses and got out" when the flames started rising, said Charles Pedersen, emergency manager for Jo Daviess County, a rural area near the Iowa border which includes Galena. "Ten more minutes and we would have lost them all." No one was hurt in the fire, which burned for days, fed by oil leaking from the ruptured tank cars. But an increase in explosive accidents in North America...
  • Two Convicted In Canada VIA Rail Terror Plot Case [Obama's Safe World!]

    03/20/2015 5:01:53 PM PDT · by Steelfish · 8 replies
    BBC ^ | March 20, 2015
    Two Convicted In Canada VIA Rail Terror Plot Case Chiheb Esseghaier, one of two suspects accused of plotting with al-Qaida in Iran to derail a train in Canada, arrives at Buttonville Airport just north of Toronto 23 April 2013 Chiheb Esseghaier said he only wanted to be judged by the Koran Two Canadian men accused of plotting to attack a passenger train going from New York to Toronto have been found guilty on multiple terror charges. Raed Jaser and Chiheb Esseghaier were arrested in 2013 after a surveillance and undercover operation. Jurors spent 10 days in deliberations before returning guilty...
  • Personal Trainer Achilles Williams Struck, Killed by Train While Filming Fitness Video

    03/20/2015 8:51:38 AM PDT · by Rodamala · 71 replies
    People Magazine ^ | 3/19/2015 | Melody Chiu
    Two months after fitness expert and reality TV star Greg Plitt was killed by a Metrolink train in California, another personal trainer was struck and killed Tuesday in Georgia by a freight train. Achilles Williams, 30, a popular Atlanta-area personal trainer, was skipping rope near the train tracks filming a YouTube workout video when he was sideswiped by a speeding freight train, a spokesperson at the Fulton County coroner's office confirms to PEOPLE.
  • Texas lawmaker pushes ban on federal aid to Texas rail transit

    03/18/2015 7:26:02 AM PDT · by Rodamala · 24 replies
    examiner.com ^ | March 8, 2015 | Lyndon Henry
    Austin,Texas — A North Texas state senator has introduced a bill in the Texas legislature that would effectively prohibit the state or any of its subsidiaries, such as cities and transit authorities, from using money from the U.S. Federal Transit Administration (FTA) for rail mass transportation.
  • Refiners group wants broader approach to crude-by-rail safety

    03/18/2015 5:18:21 AM PDT · by thackney · 4 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | March 17, 2015 | Jennifer A. Dlouhy
    Federal regulators seeking to boost the safety of moving oil by rail should focus on improving the integrity of the nation’s train tracks, not just the tank cars that carry crude, a top refining industry representative says. Charles Drevna, head of the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers, questioned “how strong a role prevention is playing in the Department of Transportation’s comprehensive strategy” for combating crude-by-rail derailments, in a letter to Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “Any effort to enhance rail safety must begin with addressing track integrity and human factors, which account for 60 percent of derailments,” Drevna said in his...
  • Safety questions, Are standards for conditioning Bakken crude oil for transport adequate?

    03/13/2015 12:01:59 PM PDT · by thackney · 12 replies
    Petroleum News Bakken ^ | Week of March 15, 2015 | Maxine Herr
    Fiery explosions from North DakotaÂ’s Bakken oil in recent weeks are raising questions about the safety of the light, sweet crude, even with new oil conditioning standards to take effect April 1, at the same time that a major North American railroad is questioning whether it even wants to be in the crude transport business (see story below). But North DakotaÂ’s top industry regulator says the new standards are only one part of the solution to eliminate rail car explosions, so heÂ’s urging the federal government to hurry with its new rail safety rules. In December, the North Dakota Industrial...
  • Rail’s apprehensions, Canadian Pacific’s board expresses reluctance...stay in crude-by-rail business

    03/13/2015 11:59:11 AM PDT · by thackney · 6 replies
    Petroleum News Bakken ^ | Week of March 15, 2015 | Gary Park
    Canadian Pacific’s board expresses reluctance to stay in crude-by-rail business Canadian Pacific Railway has disclosed that its directors are reluctant to continue transporting crude oil - an idea that was swiftly quashed by the Canadian government, but was reignited by two more derailments of crude trains. CP Rail Chief Executive Officer Hunter Harrison divulged for the first time on March 2 that his board is giving “careful consideration” to whether it can “get out of (the crude-by-rail) business.” That element of its business has increasingly burdened the company with risks and regulations that have offset a rapid growth in related...
  • Oil by Train Opposed

    03/11/2015 5:22:20 AM PDT · by thackney · 13 replies
    Santa Barbara Independent ^ | March 10, 2015 | RICHIE DEMARIA
    Community leaders and activists gathered Monday to voice their opposition to the proposed Philips 66 oil train project. A panel of speakers — including Santa Barbara Mayor Helene Schneider, 1st District Supervisor Salud Carbajal, and environmentalists with ForestEthics and 350 Santa Barbara — addressed the potentially catastrophic derailment dangers facing area communities should the energy company receive approval to add a 1.3-mile rail expansion to its Santa Maria Refinery for crude-carrying trains. The Philips 66 facility west of Nipomo removes petroleum coke and sulfur from crude oil before piping it north to Contra Costa County for further refinement. If San...
  • New York City-Bound Amtrak Train Hits Truck, Derails in North Carolina; 55 Hurt

    03/10/2015 5:06:51 AM PDT · by ilovesarah2012 · 25 replies
    nbcnewyork.com ^ | March 10, 2015
    An Amtrak train headed to New York City slammed into a tractor-trailer that got stuck on the tracks while trying to make a difficult left-hand turn in North Carolina Monday. One of the train's cars toppled and the conductor and at least 54 others were injured. It was the third serious commuter train crash in less than two months. Two deadly crashes in New York and California in February killed a total of seven people and injured 30. The oversized flatbed trailer involved in Monday's crash was transporting a modular building wrapped in blue plastic and jammed with electrical equipment,...
  • Derailed Canadian National Crude Train Still Burning

    03/09/2015 6:30:41 AM PDT · by thackney · 10 replies
    Reuters via Rig Zone ^ | March 09, 2015 | Jeffrey Hodgson
    A Canadian National Railway Co train carrying crude oil that derailed near the northern Ontario community of Gogama early on Saturday is still on fire, the company said late on Sunday. The derailment is CN's second in the region in just three days and the third in less than a month. It was the latest in a series of North American derailments involving trains hauling crude oil, raising concerns about rail safety. "Fire suppression activities are beginning, as is construction of the track diversion," CN spokesman Mark Hallman said in an email, adding that responders were working in shifts around...
  • Train carrying crude oil derails in Canada

    03/08/2015 1:27:15 PM PDT · by thackney · 54 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | March 7, 2015 | Associated Press
    A CN Rail train carrying crude oil derailed early Saturday in northern Ontario, causing numerous tank cars to catch fire and spill into a local river system, officials said. It was the third CN oil train derailment in northern Ontario in less than a month, and the second in the same area, renewing concerns about the safety of shipping crude oil by train and further suggesting that new safety requirements for tank cars carrying flammable liquids are inadequate. CN said the cars had been retrofitted with protective shields to meet a higher safety standard known as the 1232. The new...
  • BNSF oil train derails in rural Illinois; two cars aflame

    03/05/2015 3:27:05 PM PST · by ConservativeInPA · 30 replies
    Reuters ^ | March 5, 2015 | EDWARD MCALLISTER AND CATHERINE NGAI
    (Reuters) - A BNSF Railway [BNISF.UL] train loaded with crude oil derailed on Thursday afternoon in a rural area south of Galena, Illinois, with two of the tank cars catching fire, according to local officials and the company. The incident marks the latest in a series of derailments involving trains hauling crude oil, a trend that has put a heightened focus on rail safety.
  • Volatile Bakken crude expected to keep flowing through Texas

    03/05/2015 5:21:27 AM PST · by thackney · 15 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | March 5, 2015 | Michael Brick
    Despite falling oil prices, production cutbacks and persistent safety concerns, rail officials plan to continue shipping millions of gallons of volatile crude oil from the Bakken region of North Dakota through Texas, according to updated records provided by state officials on Wednesday. Average weekly volumes reflect little change from a first batch of disclosures released last week. Those disclosures, dated last summer, provided a limited view of forecasted shipments. Volumes in Harris County remain the highest, an average topping out at six million gallons a week. Federal emergency orders — approved last spring after a series of fiery derailments involving...
  • How the US transports oil, in 5 graphics

    02/26/2015 5:30:15 AM PST · by thackney · 24 replies
    BROOKINGS INSTITUTION via Business Insider ^ | FEB. 25, 2015 | JOSEPH KANE, ROBERT PUENTES AND ADIE TOMER
    The proposed Keystone XL pipeline has stirred considerable debate about the future of American energy policy. While the Senate’s recent vote to block its construction tables the discussion for the time being, it does not resolve major questions about how the U.S. transports oil today. With the ongoing shale gas boom, the U.S. is set to pass Saudi Arabia as the world’s top oil producer. Looking beyond KXL, such a rapid rise in production means American transportation networks are straining under new pressures to safely and efficiently move all this energy between different markets. The following figures show how Keystone...
  • Metrolink Crash Passengers Describe Moment Of Impact

    02/24/2015 10:17:18 PM PST · by Citizen Zed · 3 replies
    cbs Los Angeles ^ | 2-24-2015
    OXNARD (CBSLA.com) — While a number of victims of the Oxnard Metrolink crash on Tuesday morning remained in the hospital through the evening, the lucky ones who suffered no serious injuries spoke out about what the fateful moment was like. Passengers suffered scrapes, cuts and bruises, but said they were beyond grateful just to be alive. “I feel blessed, I am lucky,” victim Kent Groeneveld said. “It could have been a lot worse.” Groevenveld was riding on the top deck of the second car of Metrolink train 102, on his way to work in Monterey Park, when the train collided...
  • Murder on the Merriment Express

    02/23/2015 8:46:06 AM PST · by Kaslin · 19 replies
    Townhall.com ^ | February 23, 2015 | Katie Kieffer
    Like a king cobra on speed, the CSX oil train cut through the falling snow and rolled along the tracks at 33 m.p.h.—transporting 3 million gallons of highly-flammable crude. But the convoy was a poor match for its cargo. At 1:20 p.m. Eastern time on February 16—35 miles outside of Charleston, West Virginia—the 109-car train derailed. Fireballs sliced through the cold air; a house was leveled in flames; hundreds of home owners lost electricity and drinking water; and a Kanawha River tributary oozed with oil. One man told the Los Angeles Times that the spill emanated heat like an “atomic...
  • AP Exclusive: Fuel-hauling trains could derail at 10 a year

    02/22/2015 9:58:51 AM PST · by PROCON · 7 replies
    AP ^ | Feb. 22, 2015 | MATTHEW BROWN and JOSH FUNK
    BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The federal government predicts that trains hauling crude oil or ethanol will derail an average of 10 times a year over the next two decades, causing more than $4 billion in damage and possibly killing hundreds of people if an accident happens in a densely populated part of the U.S. The projection comes from a previously unreported analysis by the Department of Transportation that reviewed the risks of moving vast quantities of both fuels across the nation and through major cities. The study completed last July took on new relevance this week after a train loaded...
  • After West Virginia Oil Train Derailment, Sign Keystone Bill

    02/19/2015 11:08:19 AM PST · by raptor22 · 22 replies
    Investor's Business Daily ^ | February 19, 2015 | IBD EDITORIALS
    Energy: Three million gallons of Bakken crude burning in rural West Virginia after an oil train derails in a snowstorm ought to underscore the environmental safety of replacing rail cars with the Keystone XL pipeline. One of the reasons President Obama says he'll veto the Keystone pipeline bill that, as a result of last November's GOP electoral gusher, has found its way to his desk is that it will only carry Canadian crude to foreign markets and is not worth jeopardizing the environment. Two things are wrong with that argument. The first is that Keystone XL will also bring Bakken...
  • Panel Approves $7.8 Billion for Amtrak

    02/18/2015 2:34:40 PM PST · by Publius · 20 replies
    The Hill ^ | 12 February 2015 | Keith Laing
    The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee on Thursday quietly approved nearly $8 billion in funding for Amtrak. The measure calls for spending approximately $1.7 billion annually over the next four years on the rail service, a slight increase from the present level of funding. Prior Amtrak funding debates in Washington have been contentious affairs, but lawmakers said this year's bill — which was approved unanimously — is fair to both supporters and critics of the national rail service. "This is a good reform bill that firmly moves passenger rail towards greater transparency and accountability, and forces Amtrak to operate like...
  • Why everyone should care about this exploding train

    02/18/2015 5:09:45 AM PST · by ABN 505 · 13 replies
    refiinary 29 ^ | February 17, 2015 | laura barcella
    Yesterday, a train derailed in West Virginia — and exploded. It was carrying more than 100 tons of crude oil, and it burst into flames after going off the rails outside of Charleston. Miraculously, no one was killed, though hundreds were evacuated and one man was hospitalized. Social media users were understandably alarmed by the magnitude of the fire, and photos of the incident quickly spread — looking more like a scene from an action film than anything else. The crash, which could contaminate the entire local water supply, is more than just a West Virginia-specific disaster: It's a reminder...
  • As high-speed rail gains momentum, U.S. can look to Europe's example

    02/16/2015 5:02:12 PM PST · by Oldeconomybuyer · 38 replies
    Los Angeles Times ^ | February 15, 2015 | By ANASTASIA LOUKAITOU-SIDERIS
    Most of the debate over the building of the nation's first bullet train, in California, has focused on the economics of such a monumental undertaking and its projected $68-billion first-phase price tag. Largely ignored amid the excitement over the railway's recent official groundbreaking is the physical impact and design challenges that cities will need to grapple with as they prepare for high-speed rail. California should look to rail systems across Europe to fully understand the challenge of building a transportation hub that connects to the community. To make the most of California's once-in-a-lifetime chance at building a thriving transportation network,...
  • Train Carrying Crude Oil Derails in Ontario

    02/16/2015 5:01:03 AM PST · by thackney · 12 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | Feb. 15, 2015 | CAROLYN KING And RITA TRICHUR
    A train carrying crude oil and operated by Canadian National Railway Co. derailed near the town of Timmins in northern Ontario just before midnight on Saturday, causing a fire but no reported injuries. The train derailed in a remote wooded area, according to a spokesman for Montreal-based CN, Canada’s largest railroad company. He said the railway company had deployed firefighting and environmental crews to the scene. The cause of the incident wasn’t yet known, he said. “Our emergency crews continue to conduct a full site assessment to determine the number of rail cars derailed and involved in the fire, and...
  • Six People Died in a Fiery NY Train Crash Packed with 400 People… 3 Were Top Investment Bankers

    02/13/2015 6:07:40 PM PST · by dynachrome · 64 replies
    shtfplan.com ^ | 2-13-15 | Mac Slavo
    According to the initial investigations of the NTSB, which include witnesses at the scene, the driver exited the vehicle on the tracks to inspect it being hit by a crossing gate: Reports so far show that 49-year-old Ellen Brody crossed onto the tracks, when the crossing gate slammed down on the back of her vehicle. Instead of pulling through the intersection though, she got out to inspect the back of her car. It was when she got back in her car and started to pull forward that she was struck by the passing train – going 58mph. The crash led...
  • Alaska May Provide Solution To Tar Sands Issue

    02/10/2015 5:23:59 AM PST · by thackney · 14 replies
    Real Clear Energy ^ | February 10, 2015 | Nick Cunningham
    The U.S. Congress is nearing final approval of a bill that would green light the Keystone XL pipeline. But with the President set to veto the legislation when it reaches his desk, the ability of companies in Alberta to get their tar sands oil out of the country looks highly uncertain. With a southern route through Keystone XL potentially blocked, there have been alternative routes east and west. Enbridge has proposed the Northern Gateway pipeline, which would travel to British Columbia’s Pacific coast, but that has faced stiff environmental opposition from provincial residents and indigenous groups. TransCanada is also pushing...
  • TransCanada about to enter the rail business as Keystone XL delay drags on

    02/09/2015 5:22:44 AM PST · by thackney · 3 replies
    Financial Post ^ | February 4, 2015 | Yadullah Hussain
    Facing increased pressure from rail cutting into its business, while the Keystone XL pipeline remains under unending American review, TransCanada Corp. said it is planning to diversify into the oil-by-rail business within months, improving its customers’ ability to connect to its sprawling North American pipeline and storage network. “We are approaching 1.2 million barrels per day of [rail-] loading capacity — nobody has waited for Keystone XL pipeline to get built,” Russ Girling, president and CEO of the Calgary-based pipeline operator, said Wednesday following a speech to a business audience in Toronto. “Depending on our conversations [with customers], we will...
  • Fires out where ethanol tanker cars derailed in Iowa

    02/06/2015 4:43:38 AM PST · by thackney · 6 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | February 5, 2015 | Associated Press
    Fires at the site of an eastern Iowa freight train derailment are out but ethanol is leaking into the Mississippi River and the task turned to monitoring for environmental impact and offloading the fuel from derailed trains to empty cars. The cars went off the tracks at 11:20 a.m. Wednesday in a remote area about 10 miles north of Dubuque. Local authorities say three cars caught fire.....
  • California bullet train agency damaged habitat of endangered fox

    02/03/2015 9:09:52 PM PST · by george76 · 19 replies
    Los Angeles Times ^ | Feb. 2, 2015 | Ralph Vartabedian
    Even before it begins significant construction on the bullet train route, the California High-Speed Rail Authority has violated federal protections for the endangered San Joaquin kit fox in the Central Valley, federal regulators said in a letter last week. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said the authority had set up a nine-acre construction yard outside the approved footprint for the project, affecting habitat and resulting in the destruction of a kit fox den. n a Jan. 26 letter, the service said the rail agency, along with the Federal Railroad Administration and its contractors, had failed to comply with the...
  • BNSF adds oil trains, changes route in Nebraska

    01/19/2015 4:59:37 AM PST · by thackney · 6 replies
    Lincoln Journal Star ^ | January 19, 2015 | Richard Piersol
    BNSF Railway more than tripled the number of trains it moved through Nebraska with a million gallons of oil or more aboard late last year and has changed its route to bypass Lincoln, at least for some trains. Reports filed with the Nebraska Emergency Management Agency show that late last year BNSF expanded the number of oil trains it was required to report from three per week in July to a range of seven to 14 per week. Railroads must report trains that carry at least a million gallons of oil -- about 35 tank cars -- from the Bakken...
  • Metro: Day after deadly mishap

    01/13/2015 2:44:48 AM PST · by Kartographer · 4 replies
    WTOP ^ | 1/13/15 | Megan Cloherty, Andrew Mollenbeck, Mike Murillo and Kate Ryan
    An investigator Monday night said that it’ll be a long time before it’s known exactly what caused smoke to fill a Yellow Line train south of the L’Enfant Plaza Metro station Monday afternoon. A woman died; dozens of people were taken to area hospital, including two in critical condition, and Metro service still hasn't been fully restored.
  • Mark Dayton wants to limit tax increases to transportation funding

    12/31/2014 7:06:21 AM PST · by TurboZamboni · 6 replies
    Pioneer Press ^ | 12-31-14 | David Montgomery
    Minnesota's highway needs can't be met without more tax revenue, Gov. Mark Dayton said Tuesday -- setting him up for a possible clash with the new Republican majority in the House. Dayton is finalizing his 2016-17 budget proposal, which aims to raise what he says is the $6 billion Minnesota's roads need over the next 10 years. The plan calls for a 6.5 percent wholesale surtax on gasoline -- separate from the existing 28.5 cents-per-gallon tax already levied. That means the tax would bring in more money when gas prices increase. "Our transportation systems are getting worse," Dayton said. "Anybody...
  • Deadly oil train blast settlement fund tops $200M ahead of filing next month

    12/23/2014 8:57:43 AM PST · by Citizen Zed · 4 replies
    Times Colonist ^ | 12-23-2014 | DAVID SHARP
    A proposed settlement fund for victims of a fiery train derailment that claimed 47 lives in Canada is nearly halfway to a goal of $500 million in funding commitments ahead of its filing next month, the defunct railroad's bankruptcy trustee said. More than a dozen corporations that face potential liability in the Lac Megantic, Quebec, oil train disaster have agreed to pay over $200 million to the fund and that sum could more than double by the time judges in the U.S. and Canada sign off, bankruptcy trustee Robert Keach told The Associated Press. Keach, the trustee in the Montreal,...
  • Railcar Bottleneck Looms for Oil

    12/22/2014 6:14:48 AM PST · by thackney · 26 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | Dec. 21, 2014 | BOB TITA
    One-third of the crude oil hauled from North Dakota’s Bakken Shale region by railcars could be forced off the tracks and into expensive truck fleets in the next four years, according to a railcar-industry trade group. The Railway Supply Institute says there aren’t enough shops to retrofit cars carrying flammable liquids in time to meet proposed federal deadlines, and that tens of thousands of cars will be idled as a result. The U.S. Department of Transportation wants tank cars carrying crude oil to be retrofitted with more puncture-resistant features in two years, and those carrying ethanol to be upgraded in...
  • North Dakota to require every barrel of crude oil be filtered

    12/09/2014 1:33:41 PM PST · by thackney · 41 replies
    Reuters ^ | Dec 9, 2014 | ERNEST SCHEYDER
    North Dakota is poised to impose the strictest oil standards in its history on Tuesday, requiring every barrel of crude to be filtered for dangerous types of natural gas in an effort to make crude-by-rail transport safer. The new requirements come as federal, state and local officials grapple with how best to ensure the safe transport of North Dakota's crude oil, which has been linked to a string of fiery crude-by-rail explosions, including one last year in Quebec that killed 47 people. Governor Jack Dalrymple and the two other members of the North Dakota Industrial Commission (NDIC) are taking the...
  • More oil to travel on N.J. railroads

    11/29/2014 12:04:54 PM PST · by Coleus · 32 replies
    bergen record ^ | 11.24.14 | Scott Fallon
    DON SMITH/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER An air permit issued on Nov. 6 by the state Department of Environmental Protection allows Buckeye Partners to accept large amounts of Canadian tar sands oil at its newly renovated oil terminal in Perth Amboy. As debate rages in Washington over the environmental risks of allowing Canadian tar sands oil to be pumped across the U.S. in the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, the Christie administration has quietly approved a permit that essentially opens New Jersey’s rail lines to carry that kind of oil through densely populated towns, past thousands of homes and businesses.  An air permit,...
  • Warren Buffett's Massive Railroad Lobby

    11/19/2014 8:07:04 AM PST · by upbeat5 · 41 replies
    Muckety ^ | May 5, 2014 | Laurie Bennett
    What do train whistles and Warren Buffett have in common? If you answered old-fashioned charm, you’re wrong. The Sightline Institute, a Seattle-based think tank, calls the avuncular billionaire “the man behind the exploding trains.” Buffett’s company, Berkshire Hathaway, owns Union Tank Car Company, North America’s largest leaser of tank cars. Berkshire also owns BNSF Railway Company, which moves many of those cars.
  • Dad pushed in front of train as horrified wife watches

    11/17/2014 4:23:56 PM PST · by Kid Shelleen · 92 replies
    NY Post ^ | 11/16/2014 | Reuven Fenton, Larry Celona and Rebecca Harshbarger
    A hardworking father of two was killed Sunday when a stranger shoved him off a Bronx subway platform and into the path of a train — as his horrified wife looked on, family and police sources said. A suspect was spotted minutes later boarding a city bus — and then hopping off to coolly smoke a cigarette. --SNIP-- Police released surveillance video of a middle-aged, balding man dressed in a black leather jacket, black pants and white sneakers calmly sauntering outside the station after the crime.
  • Russia To Revamp North Korea's Rail System, Eyes Mineral Resources

    11/10/2014 6:33:21 AM PST · by TigerLikesRooster · 7 replies
    International Business Times ^ | October 30 2014 | Michelle FlorCruz
    Russia To Revamp North Korea's Rail System, Eyes Mineral Resources By Michelle FlorCruz  October 30 2014 2:07 PM Russia and North Korea are considering a deal that would allow Russia access to the pariah nation’s mineral resources. Moscow reported that in exchange for access to the North’s mineral-rich lands, Russia would invest $25 billion into revamping the country’s dated railway network. According to Russia’s state-run Rossiskaya Gazeta, which quoted Russia’s minister for development of Far Eastern Russia, Alexander Galushka, the project would take on the task of updating roughly 3,000 km, or about 1,875 miles, of the North’s railroads...
  • BNSF to add surcharge to older tank cars

    10/26/2014 6:53:44 AM PDT · by thackney · 8 replies
    , JournalStar.com ^ | October 24, 2014 | JournalStar.com
    BNSF Railway Co. plans to apply a $1,000 surcharge for each older tank car that hauls oil, as the railroad owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. encourages shippers to scrap the puncture-prone cars. The charge, which will take effect Jan. 1, will add about $1.50 per barrel to the cost of shipping oil across the country. It’s the first surcharge announced by a major U.S. railroad for older cars known as DOT-111s, and won’t apply to cars called CPC-1232s that are built to higher standards adopted in October 2011, according to a BNSF notice. The Obama administration in July...
  • 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,...