[Bellingham, WA] Today, in response to growing public safety concerns nationwide, the Obama Administration issued new draft regulations for trains carrying crude oil.
Matt Krogh, ForestEthics campaigner, issued the following statement:
"Today the Obama administration announced weak new standards for high-hazard flammable trains that give the oil industry a license to threaten the safety of millions of Americans and leave communities and emergency responders holding the bag.
“The administration seems to have carefully calculated and managed the inconvenience of these rules to the oil industry, but they’ve severely underestimated the threat of these trains to the American public.
“These are some of the heaviest, most dangerous trains on American tracks and they now pass through nearly every downtown in North America. The worst of these oil tanker cars are unsafe at any speed -- they should be banned immediately, not years down the line. The maximum speed of these trains should be no faster than what a tanker car can safely contain without a spill or explosion after a derailment.
“The administration needs to go back to the drawing board and put public safety first.”
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ForestEthics recently released the oil train blast zone map tool that allows users to identify if their home or other location is within the evacuation zone along rail lines used by oil trains. More than 25 million Americans live inside the blast zone.