The decision not to transport hazardous chemicals via rail network by railroad companies in the US has raised a debate among the various transportation organisations for its viability.
Railroad companies in the US have petitioned the federal regulators to put an end to carrying hazardous materials like chlorine over long distances by train through urban areas.
This petition addresses the danger posed by the 110,000 carloads of toxic chemicals rail companies carry each year. The rail companies, fearing billions in legal claims, requested liability protection from the government if toxic materials are released during derailment or damage.
However, Massachusetts advocacy group Citizens for Rail Safety and Association of American Railroads says that trucks or ships carrying materials that railroads reject will pose a greater danger.
The rail companies’ petition is also opposed by chemical and fertiliser companies and associations, the Transportation Security Administration and the Transportation Department as a result of increased rail safety rules.
As per the government rules railroads will have to transport materials used in manufacturing, agriculture and water treatment.