U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Statement on Crude by Rail Final Rules
"Congress should pass legislation that speeds up the phase out of these dangerous cars and I am hopeful that my Republican colleagues will join our effort to do so as we work to keep Wisconsin communities safe."
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin released the following statement after the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) announced its Final Rule on High Hazard Flammable Trains (HHFT) Rulemaking (also known as the “Crude by Rail Rule”):
“Today the Department of Transportation and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration released much-anticipated final rules to update safety standards governing the transportation of crude oil by rail. While I am glad that the Administration is finally taking steps to protect our communities, I have serious concerns with these rules. Inadequate tank cars will be allowed to continue carrying volatile crude oil until 2020 and in some cases—indefinitely. While I understand concerns about allowing time for industry to adjust to new standards, I believe that tank cars without thermal protection are inappropriate for shipping crude oil, period. Congress should pass legislation that speeds up the phase out of these dangerous cars and I am hopeful that my Republican colleagues will join our effort to do so as we work to keep Wisconsin communities safe.”
Recently, Senator Baldwin joined Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Patty Murray (D-WA), and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) to introduce legislation that would set strong new safety standards for trains hauling volatile crude oil, to better protect American communities along the tracks. The Crude-By-Rail Safety Act of 2015 requires the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) to draft new regulations to mitigate the volatility of gases in crude oil shipped via tank car and immediately halt the use of older-model tank cars that have been shown to be at high risk for puncturing and catching fire in derailments.
In March, Senator Baldwin sent a letter to President Obama urging the Administration to issue final guidance to address oil train safety. The letter also included specific proposals to strengthen the recommended rules after recent accidents, including one on March 5th in neighboring Galena, Illinois, have demonstrated the need for improvements.
In January, Senator Baldwin urged DOT and PHMSA to finalize a rule to increase oil tank car safety after the agencies missed their deadline. The agencies were required by law to have completed the rule by January 15, 2015. Senator Baldwin provided public comments on the proposed rule in a letter to DOT Secretary Anthony Foxx and PHMSA Administrator Cynthia Quarterman in 2014.
More information on Senator Baldwin’s efforts on Wisconsin rail safety here.
Press Releases by Tammy Baldwin
U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Awarded Army Decoration for Distinguished Civilian Service from Secretary Eric FanningJan 14th, 2017 by Tammy Baldwin
Secretary of the Army awards decoration to those who provide distinguished service and make substantial contributions to the accomplishment of the Army's missions
U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Joins Young Wisconsinites to Discuss Republican Plan to Take Away Affordable Health Care for Young Students and WorkersJan 13th, 2017 by Tammy Baldwin
“I’m proud to champion a reform that allows young people to stay on their parents’ insurance until age 26”
U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Announces She Will Oppose Senator Jeff Sessions’ Nomination for U.S. Attorney GeneralJan 13th, 2017 by Tammy Baldwin
"After meeting with Senator Sessions, I cannot support his confirmation to be our next Attorney General"
U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Statement After Commerce Committee Hearing on Nomination of Elaine Chao for Secretary of the Department of TransportationJan 11th, 2017 by Tammy Baldwin
"I am very pleased that Ms. Chao stated her commitment and the Trump Administration’s commitment to strong ‘Buy America’ standards. "
U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Introduces Amendment to Oppose Legislation that Would Make Young Americans Sick AgainJan 11th, 2017 by Tammy Baldwin
Amendment to budget resolution would protect the Affordable Care Act reform that allows young people to stay on their parents’ health plan until age 26
U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Calls for Disclosure of Trump Cabinet Nominees’ Golden Parachute Bonus PayoutsJan 11th, 2017 by Tammy Baldwin
“The American people cannot afford to have industry insiders writing their own rules to make a rigged system worse.”