WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation has issued new proposed rules on tankers transporting oil, which include the phase-out of old DOT-111 rail cars for transporting crude oil and other hazardous liquids.
The new proposed rule is being considered upon the urging of New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. It would not only phase out the use of unsafe rail cars, but would also propose new operational requirements that would reduce operating speeds and enhance braking capabilities for high-hazard flammable trains. The DOT also announced an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rule-making on oil spill response plans.
According to the Association of American Railroads, oil shipments have increased from 9,500 carloads in 2008 to an estimated 400,000 carloads in 2013 nationally.
New York has also seen a dramatic rise in the transport of crude oil across rail lines, including a series of derailments and spills, which could put communities at risk.