Pipeline Rail

PHMSA requests input on rail tank car safety enhancements

Washington – The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration is requesting public input on a proposal to enhance the safety and durability of rail tank cars used to transport hazardous materials.

The proposal is partly in response to recommendations from the National Transportation Safety Board regarding a common non-pressure tank car model used to transport ethanol and crude oil, designated DOT 111. In recent train derailment investigations, NTSB has found that DOT 111 tank cars were more likely to rupture than pressure tank cars, and their leaked contents contributed to injuries and fatalities. Pressure tank cars have thicker shells and other safety features for transporting substances such as anhydrous ammonia that can be toxic when inhaled, NTSB notes.

Comments are due Nov. 5.