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Rail News: CSX Transportation

STB backs CSXT's opposition to D.C. haz-mat ban

CSX Transportation gained another ally in its opposition to a temporary hazardous materials cargo ban in Washington, D.C. The Surface Transportation Board has upheld CSXT's petition asking a federal court to rule the 90-day ban invalid.

Earlier this week, STB members determined Washington, D.C., has no authority to ban haz-mat shipments within two miles of the city despite security concerns. The ban is scheduled to take effect April 11.

In its ruling, the board stated the ban would "likely lead to further piecemeal attempts by other localities to regulate rail shipments," and that federal law is "intended to prevent a patchwork of local regulation from unreasonably interfering with interstate commerce."

Association of American Railroads (AAR) officials agree with the STB's decision and CSXT's position, which recently received backing from the U.S. departments of transportation, justice and homeland security

"We are delighted the STB recognized that the rail industry must be allowed to move goods and products safely and efficiently," said AAR President and Chief Executive Officer Edward Hamberger in a prepared statement.

On March 23, a U.S. district court will conduct a hearing in Washington to address CSXT's petition.

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More News from 3/16/2005