Global Partners LP, one of the largest distributors of petroleum in the Northeast, said it will require trains carrying crude oil into its terminals to use stronger, safer tank cars that meet tougher standards recommended by the rail industry.
The move by Waltham-based Global, announced last week, follows several fiery crashes involving trains transporting crude oil from North Dakota, including one that recently forced the evacuation of parts of downtown Lynchburg, Va.
Earlier this week the US Department of Transportation issued a nonbinding safety advisory recommending that rail companies pull older cars out of service for crude shipments and use sturdier rail tankers less likely to rupture ‘ and explode.
The amount of crude traveling the nation’s rails has skyrocketed in recent years as US oil production has boomed, particularly in North Dakota, where the drilling technique known as fracking has opened reserves trapped in shale rock formations. As of June 1, Global Partners said, only rail tankers meeting heightened safety standards proposed by the Association of American Railroads will be allowed to carry crude into its terminals in Albany, N.Y., and outside of Portland, Ore.
The proposal would affect some 40,000 tanker cars.
Read on about the idea at the Boston Globe.