Archives: PHMSA

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Crude-by-Rail Update: The DOT’s Final Rule Is Out—How Can Producers and Midstream Transporters Comply with the New Classification Standards?

On May 1, the Department of Transportation—through its operating agencies the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration[1] and the Federal Railroad Administration—issued its final crude-by-rail rule. The rule mandates more stringent standards for newly constructed tank cars—along with the retrofitting of older ones—and imposes new operational controls for high-hazard flammable trains.[2] Despite the new rule, … Continue Reading

Crude-by-Rail Update: What to Expect From Recent Crude Oil Derailments

These are uncertain and stressful times for all involved in the transportation of crude oil by rail. Since February 14, two fiery derailments in West Virginia and Ontario have refocused an unwelcome spotlight on the necessity of transporting crude oil production by railroad in areas without adequate access to pipelines. The attention comes at a … Continue Reading

Poe Leggette & Alex Obrecht Present on the Safety Concerns that Face Crude-by-Rail Transportation

BakerHostetler’s energy group co-head and a member of the energy team recently presented on the safety concerns that confront the transportation of crude oil by rail. Focusing primarily on federal regulation, the team explained the role and powers of the Department of Transportation (DOT), the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials … Continue Reading

Safety Alerts and Other Recommendations in the Wake of Rail Accidents Involving Bakken Formation Crude Oil

Editor’s Note: This entry is also to be published in the Spring 2014 Bakken Oil Report. Recent accidents involving rail cars transporting crude oil from the Bakken shale region have resulted in the heightened interest of rail industry regulators and other federal agencies, including the Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration (PHMSA), the Federal Railroad … Continue Reading

Don’t Get Caught on the Wrong Side of the Track: PHMSA Issues New Safety Alert

On January 2, 2014, the Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration (PHMSA) issued a safety alert for the purpose of notifying the general public, emergency responders and shippers and carriers that recent derailments and resulting fires associated with the transport of crude oil from the Bakken region indicate that this kind of crude oil may … Continue Reading