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Pennsylvania safety seminar puts focus on Bakken crude

Emergency responders from four counties gathered in Hempfield on Saturday to learn how to better respond to rail incidents, particularly those involving Bakken crude oil. The highly flammable crude is transported from the Bakken Formation, an area encompassing parts of Canada, Montana and North Dakota, to oil refineries, some of which are on the East Coast. There’s been an increase ...

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Train derailment spilled thousands of gallons of ethanol

ALMA, Wis. — Crews are working to clear a freight train derailment in western Wisconsin that spilled thousands of gallons of ethanol. BNSF Railway said crews continued Sunday to transfer ethanol from the derailed cars and get the cars back on the tracks. The train derailed Saturday about two miles north of Alma, a town along the Mississippi River. Some ...

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Book details railroad tracks for responders

CONFLUENCE — In 1987, rescuers had to evacuate the entire borough of Confluence when 27 tank railcars derailed in the heart of town. Two decades later, a similar scene unfolded: a CSX freight train derailed in February 2007 on the outskirts of the same town, leaving behind twisted railcars, scattered coal and ripped tracks. Both incidents happened before thousands of ...

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Company looks at Carlsbad to build railroad trans-loading facility

CARLSBAD – One company is considering building a railroad trans-loading facility in Carlsbad. Northern White Sand, a subsidiary company to Eagle Materials, is currently in the process of doing a feasibility study for building a sand unloading station in Carlsbad. Rail cars would bring sand in from mines the company owns, then transfer the sand to customer’s trucks. Representatives from ...

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Lawmakers point to accidents to make case for rail upgrades

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Democratic lawmakers say a string of recent explosive crude-by-rail derailments nationwide make it necessary to improve Minnesota’s railroad network. Five trains hauling crude oil have derailed since February. Sen. Scott Dibble, a Minneapolis Democrat, says it’s “sheer dumb luck” no similar accidents have happened in Minnesota. Seven or more trains haul North Dakota crude across the ...

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Railroad emergency response eyed by group

If railroad oil tanker cars or others carrying hazardous cargo derailed along the Norfolk Southern tracks in the Sinking Spring-Wyomissing corridor, which way would spilled material flow, where would firefighting foam come from, and where might a command post be placed? Getting answers to those questions has moved higher on Thomas Bausher’s to-do list after several accidents involving oil trains ...

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Low oil prices a bonus for Minnesota railroad regulators

ST. PAUL, Minn. — A Minnesota railroad regulatory official says lower oil prices have caused train traffic from North Dakota to level off. That’s given Minnesota officials space to work on safety issues. About seven trains haul crude from the Bakken oilfields through Minnesota daily. Dave Christianson from the Minnesota Department of Transportation says he expects that traffic to stay ...

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Berthold taking on BNSF Railway over blocked crossings

BERTHOLD, N.D. — BNSF railway could be fined $1,500 and staff members jailed if the company’s trains block both crossings in Berthold for more than 20 minutes, the town’s mayor said. The blocked crossings put school buses behind schedule and could present a problem for fire and ambulance crews, Mayor Alan Lee told The Bismarck Tribune. “They’re a big corporation, ...

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