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Rail News: Federal Legislation & Regulation

USDOT issues final rule requiring rail oil-spill response plans


The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) last week issued a final rule requiring railroads to develop comprehensive oil-spill response plans and share information about high-hazard flammable train operations with state and tribal governments.

USDOT's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), in consultation with the Federal Railroad Administration, issued the rule to improve oil-spill response readiness and mitigate effects of rail accidents and incidents involving oil and other high-hazard flammable trains.

"This final rule is necessary due to expansion in U.S. energy production having led to significant challenges for the country's transportation system," according to PHMSA's executive summary.

PHMSA first proposed the rule in July 2016. The specifics are available here.

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More News from 2/19/2019