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Letter from the President – 11/10/14

Barb FullmanJust because you asked…..

The volume of crude oil and ethanol transported by rail has increased exponentially in the past three years. A significant portion of these shipments is coming from the Bakken field in North Dakota, whose rapid development has resulted in much of the crude oil needing to be shipped by rail tank cars. The majority of these shipments are concentrated toward several port facilities on the east coast of the United States.

A series of serious rail accidents in both the United States and Canada has ensured that safety has become a top priority for the rail industry, the oil and gas industry, and the communities through which these shipments travel. These developments have prompted extensive federal attention to HAZMAT and other safety risks, and regulators are struggling to find solutions. The states, led by New York, and environmental organizations are becoming increasingly active and vocal in their concerns about safety and the regulations effecting gas and oil transportation.

One of the problems for coming up with a quick solution is the number of agencies involved in these regulatory standards. Tank car specifications are set by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) within the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). The operation of railroads, including the transportation of hazardous materials and the routing of trains carrying hazardous materials, is regulated by DOT’s Federal Railroad Administration (FRA). Monitoring the whole system is the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), which has no regulatory authority, but issues safety recommendations to federal and state regulatory agencies, industry and safety standards organizations, emergency response organizations, and affected industry participants. All of these agencies are agreed, however, that the safety of the workers and the communities is paramount.

Total Equipment Training has developed a HAZMAT program which is up to OSHA standards, as well as other heavy equipment training programs, which will help educate those involved in the rail industry, and oil and gas industry. Our trainers can go anywhere in the world where they might be needed to provide the most comprehensive HAZMAT safety program available.

Call us today at 610-321-2679. I would be happy to help and I hope to hear from you soon.

Stay safe, stay up to date.

Barb Fullman,


About Barb

Barbara Fullman, CEO of Total Equipment Training.