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EPA orders UP to eliminate oil spills at California service track

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently ordered Union Pacific Railroad to eliminate oil discharges and improve spill prevention measures at and around its Martinez, Calif., service track.

The agency also ordered UP to investigate the extent of oil contamination to Suisun Bay. Failure to comply could result in fines up to $37,500 per day.

In February, the EPA investigated a reported oil discharge into Suisun Bay at UP’s service track, where the Class I maintains and re-fuels locomotives. The agency determined oil originating from soil and pads surrounding the shoreline track entered an adjacent storm drain and drained into the bay.

“It is critical that companies such as Union Pacific take the necessary steps to prevent any oil spills from their train re-fueling areas,” said Dan Suter, EPA on-scene coordinator in the Pacific Southwest Region emergency response section, in a prepared statement.

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More News from 6/16/2005