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Alaska Railroad pays penalty, upgrades emergency-response equipment to settle EPA fuel-spill suit

Alaska Railroad Corp. (ARRC) recently agreed to pay U.S. Environmental Protection Agency $150,000 and upgrade emergency-response equipment to settle a federal suit involving an October 1999 derailment and fuel spill near Canyon, Alaska.

The railroad plans to spend $25,000 to install hi-rail gear on a mobile command center, enabling the emergency-response unit to reach remote sites. ARRC agreed to conduct an operational test on the command center by May 8.

"With this settlement, we resolve the federal claims and get a vastly improved emergency-response vehicle in the process," said ARRC Vice Presdient and Chief Operating Officer Matt Glynn in a prepared statement.

When the Anchorage-bound fuel train derailed, about 12,500 gallons of jet fuel leaked into a small stream and series of ponds. Employees and contractors immediately recovered 94 percent of the fuel, and currently no measurable contamination remains, ARRC officials said.

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More News from 3/10/2003