U.S. transportation officials issue oil train safety measures

AP photo

AP photo

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Federal transportation officials say they’re taking a series of steps to improve the safety of trains hauling crude oil and other flammable liquids, including an emergency order limiting train speeds to no more than 40 mph in “high impact” urban areas. Among other steps announced Friday by the Department of Transportation is a warning to railroads to use the latest technology to check for flaws in train wheels. Major freight railroads are already limiting oil trains to no more 40 mph in urban areas under a voluntary agreement, but the order makes that a requirement and extends it to trains carrying other flammable liquids like ethanol. There have been dozens of fiery crashes over past decade involving trains hauling oil and ethanol in the U.S. and Canada, including the one in Lynchburg last April.

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