WASHINGTON (CN) – Impending standards for toxin carrying railroad tank cars are causing a shortage, according to the Transportation Department.
An April proposal would require that the industry create new technology and design hazardous materials tank cars that are less likely to release inhalable toxins in the case of a railroad accident.
Unfortunately, as a result, rail car leasing companies are phasing out old hazardous material tank cars and not buying new ones. Since cars last more than two decades, the companies do not want to put out the money to buy tank cars that must be phased out in a few years.
The Transportation Department and its Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration and Federal Railroad Administration seek input on interim standards that provide for the construction of better tank cars using existing technology, and grandfathers in those cars for twenty-five years following issuance of the final rule.
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