Railways, State Governments Debate Public Disclosure of Crude Oil Shipments
Three U.S. railways and several state emergency management agencies are debating public disclosure of volatile crude oil shipments, following a federal order that the railroads make the information available to the states. The U.S. government required the disclosures, including routes, emergency response information, and volumes of oil above a million gallons, “after a string of fiery tank-car accidents in North Dakota, Alabama, Virginia and Quebec,” AP reports. The railways say the information is “security sensitive,” and they’re asking states to withhold it from the public. Wisconsin, Montana, Illinois, North Dakota, Idaho, and Washington State say the railways’ proposed confidentiality agreements violate open-records laws, and have refused to sign.