Rail cars used to ship oil called "unacceptable"
WASHINGTON- A federal safety official says the rail tank cars being used to ship crude oil from North Dakota's Bakken region are an "unacceptable public risk," and even cars voluntarily upgraded by the industry "may not be sufficient."
National Transportation Safety Board member Robert Sumwalt told a House subcommittee Wednesday that the cars, known as DOT-111s, were involved in derailments of oil trains in Casselton, N.D., and Lac-Megantic, Quebec, just across the U.S. border.
The NTSB has long urged replacement of the tank cars, but federal efforts to write tougher regulations for new tank cars have dragged on for two years.
Cynthia Quarterman, head of the federal hazards materials safety administration, said she expects to propose new rules this year. She had no estimate for when the rule would be final.