California Panel Seeks Chemical Rail Car Ban
A California state legislative committee has approved a bill to ban many railroad chemical tank cars in the state despite opposition by much of the chemical industry. Senate Bill 419 would prohibit pressurized tank cars that do not meet the most current federally adopted design and engineering standards. The measure could ban tank cars manufactured before 2004 and would severely hamper the transport of chemicals in the state, according to the Chemical Industry Council of California. The California Senate Transportation Committee approved the bill by a vote of 8-5. California Sen. Joe Simitian, the author of the measure, said he was disappointed by the opposition of the chemical industry. "All we're asking is that when the most dangerous chemicals are in transit, then the safest available technology should be used," he said.