DELAWARE RIVER VALLEY & BEYOND — The chorus for calls to improve the overall safety of the rail transportation of hazardous materials have intensified, ever since the February 3 train …
DELAWARE RIVER VALLEY & BEYOND — The chorus for calls to improve the overall safety of the rail transportation of hazardous materials have intensified, ever since the February 3 train derailment near Palestine, OH.
Two major players associated with railroad safety and the handling of hazardous materials (hazmat) across the country and within the Upper Delaware River corridor, recently addressed the complex issues with statistics to put the hazard level in perspective, along with recommended actions to the industry.
A statement recently released by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) on the topic of hazmat safety stated that railroads “take a holistic approach to safety to minimize the risk of rail accidents and to safeguard communities... efforts that have helped reduce hazmat accidents rates by 78 percent since 2000.”
Noteworthy statistics calculated per million train miles used in data released in March 2023, and include several key points:
For information about the FRA, which is part of the United States Department of Transportation (DOT), email it at railroads.dot.gov.
On March 8, the Association of American Railroads (AAR), which bills itself as the “world’s leading railroad policy, research and technology organization focusing on safety and productivity of rail carriers,” weighed in on the recent derailments with several suggestions for the industry, geared toward restoring trust in the nation’s rail carriers.
The list includes seven key components for Class I railroads:
In the March 8 press release, the AAR stated in part, “The industry believes that the February 3 derailment and its aftermath require railroads and freight shippers alike to lead with actions... Policy actions taken reflexively that are not likely to achieve meaningful safety benefits could have a wide range of unintended economic and environmental consequences and a negative impact on the safe movement of all goods, including hazmat.”
For information about the ARR, contact it at www.aar.org.
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