Short Lines & Regionals
Switching & Terminal
Senate bill would mandate STB reforms
It is shipper-friendly legislation with which freight railroads probably can live. And while it’s not all the stuff so-called captive shippers would prefer—such as mandatory caps on rail rates and a study into the benefits of mandatory reciprocal switching—it stands a better probability of becoming law than anything previously attempted in Congress on behalf of shippers.
Uncertainty clouds key rail bills in Senate
Two bills of substantial importance to railroads—Staggers Rail Act revisions as part of reauthorization of the Surface Transportation Board (STB), and extension of the deadline to implement Positive Train Control (PTC)—took meaningful steps forward March 25, gaining the imprimatur of...
API twisting DOE report on crude oil
A survey of crude oil science commissioned by the U.S. Department of Energy is being cited, rather loosely, by the oil industry’s national lobby to discredit proponents of compulsory treatment of crude oil before it is loaded into railcars. The review...
NYCT named in OSHA harassment ruling
The U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has ruled that an MTA New York City Transit supervisor discriminated against an employee for exercising his safety rights under the National Transit Systems Security Act (NTSSA). As...
Lowenthal proposes infrastructure trust fund
Rep. Alan Lowenthal (D-Calif.) has introduced legislation he says “will provide a dedicated revenue source to invest in rebuilding crumbling freight infrastructure.” The bill, H.R.1308, Economy in Motion: The National Multimodal and Sustainable Freight Infrastructure Act, aims to raise roughly $8...
“UP, UP, where art thou?” asks Texas customer
As all good Texas stories require, this one includes beer. While there is no pickup truck or trailer park involved, a railroad and organized labor are prominent. As often is the case, the railroad appears to wear the black hat;...
Senate bill would mandate STB reforms
It is shipper-friendly legislation with which freight railroads probably can live. And while it’s not all the stuff so-called captive shippers would prefer—such as mandatory caps on rail rates and a study into the benefits of mandatory reciprocal switching—it stands...
Senators seek to speed infrastructure permitting
Bi-partisan legislation has been introduced in the Senate to remedy what are termed “significant challenges in the federal environmental permitting process” that delay and discourage railroads from constructing additional capacity. Senators Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) and Joe Machin (D-W.Va.) are co-sponsors of...
Greenbrier Cos. touts fiscal 2Q15 orders
The Greenbrier Companies, Inc. announced Tuesday, March 17, 2015 it has received new orders in its second quarter ended Feb. 28, 2015 for 10,100 railcar units valued at $1.09 billion. Orders for the quarter include doublestack intermodal cars, covered hopper cars...
FRA: Tank cars must upgrade valves
Under a fairly intense political spotlight spurred by a series of high-profile rail incidents involving crude-by-rail (CBR) shipments, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has issued a "Railworthiness Directive requiring railroad tank car owners to replace unapproved valves currently installed in...
U.S. sway affects Canada CBR safety focus
Transport Canada's selection March 11, 2015 of new tank car specifications is surely a harbinger of the choice the White House will make later this spring from among the options proposed by U.S. rail and hazmat regulators. The clue is in...
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