As a Quebecer I am horrified by the runaway rail car crash in Megantic, Quebec. As reported in FairWarning this appears to be yet another example of poorly enforced regulations coupled with lax enforcement. As FairPlay notes, “The DOT-111 tank car is widely used to carry hazardous waste, oil and ethanol. But federal regulators have identified many problems with the model — its thin steel shell can puncture in accidents, the ends are vulnerable to tears, and fittings atop the tanker can break during rollovers, the National Transportation Safety Board says. In 2009, the agency said the cars’ design flaws had worsened an Illinois spill caused by a derailment and called for a retrofit or phaseout of the cars. Yet the Obama administration is nine months behind schedule on a proposal to strengthen safety standards for the DOT-111 car. The death toll from last weekend’s Quebec crash has climbed to 50. ” To be clear, although the line in question is American owned, I assume the Provincial and Federal governments in Canada have some jurisdiction and responsibility in this tragic event. I am increasingly of the view that such disasters are man-made and entirely preventable. The Associated Press, The Christian Science Monitor, EnergyWire – See more at: http://www.fairwarning.org/2013/07/regulators-have-warned-for-years-about-safety-of-rail-cars-involved-in-quebec-crash/?
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