New Hampshire, Maine oil-spill committee concerned by crude-by-rail shipments

Committee overseeing oil spill preparedness has “concerns” about the railroad transportation of crude oil to refineries in New Brunswick.
Train track crossing in Jackman, Maine
Trains that have carried crude oil have passed through the middle of Jackman — just as they had through Lac-Megantic, Quebec. Photo by Jeff Pouland.

The committee that oversees oil spill preparedness in Maine and New Hampshire has “concerns” about the railroad transportation of crude oil through the two states to refineries in New Brunswick. They made those concerns known in their recently issued 2014 work plan.

“The deadly oil-train derailment in Lac-Megantic Quebec on July 6, 2013, 10 miles from the Maine border refocused the discussions on needs for improved measures to prevent and mitigate potential incidents,” the Maine & New Hampshire Area Committee plan states. “Closure of the rail line due to the Lac-Megantic incident appears to have stymied rail transport of crude oil through Maine for the time being.”

The plan, which members drew up on February 18 of this year, states that the volume of crude oil-by-rail increased from 14,000 barrels in January 2012, to 100,000 barrels in April 2012, to 750,000 barrels by September 2012.

To see the Center’s reporting on the dangers posed by crude oil-by-rail shipments through Maine, see our prior coverage: Maine responders need to be better prepared to fight Lac Mégantic-type derailment.


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