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NTSB sounds alarm again on oil trains – When will government act?

Take it from the National Transportation Safety Board: The White House must move faster to address the danger of crude oil trains and take steps “to prevent accidents and save lives.”

“We can’t wait a decade for safer rail cars,” NTSB Chairman Christopher A. Hart said Monday.

Even the government acknowledges that our leaders are moving too slowly on this critically important issue. A series of disastrous derailments, oil spills and explosions continue to make the risks entirely clear. Riverkeeper is calling for immediate steps – beyond those recommended by the NTSB – to protect our communities and our environment. The Hudson River and nearby communities are put at risk daily by crude oil shipments that are fundamentally unsafe.

“Generations of NTSB officials have been sounding the alarm over these dangerous rail cars and calling for their removal from hazardous material service,” Riverkeeper Staff Attorney Sean Dixon said. “We’re thankful that this agency is again fighting for the safety of our communities, economies, and environment. The question remains – when will the agencies tasked with setting the rules for crude-by-rail and the use of these railcars take action to implement the NTSB’s warnings?

“The Department of Transportation has the authority to immediately turn these warnings into orders, yet we’re seeing nothing but delay after delay.”

Riverkeeper and the Center for Biological Diversity petitioned the DOT for an emergency order limiting the length of trains used to ship crude oil. Such practical steps are needed to reduce the potential for devastation before the next oil-by-rail disaster occurs.

Keep the Hudson River flowing!
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