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What do you think of the new DOT crude-by-rail rules?

Crude Rail Car / photo: Greg Goebel

The Department of Transportation has proposed new rules to overhaul tank cars transporting crude. The new rules are offered in three options costing from $2.6 billion to $6 billion calculated over a 20-year period.  Under the proposed rules, thousands of existing tank cars would be removed from service within two years if not retrofitting to comply with new design standards.  New cars would have to be built with thicker outer shells, electronically controlled pneumatic braking systems and rollover protection.  A speed limit restriction on 40 mph in highly populated urban areas would also be enforced.

Without the new rules, the Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration, a DOT agency, expects 15 mainline derailments to occur in 2015 alone, and over the next twenty years – at least 10 major safety events with environmental damages, injuries, and fatalities.

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