NH town seeking assurance on oil trainsAP , Associated Press
Aug. 3, 2013 1:55 PM ET
DURHAM, N.H. (AP) — The town of Durham is asking a railway that that transports oil through the community for reassurances about safety precautions and a description of the type of oil being transported.
Durham Town Administrator Todd Selig wrote a letter to Pan Am Railways, which handles and transports crude oil cargo in hopes of avoiding an accident such as what happened last month in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, killing 47.
"We have been aware for some time that shipments of oil have been transported via Pan Am rails through Durham and other New Hampshire communities," Selig told Foster's Daily Democrat. (http://bit.ly/15CJ1Gr) "I thought it made good sense to reach out to Pan Am directly to get a much better understanding of what Pan Am is doing to ensure safety along the rail corridor."
Selig said some community members asked about the issue in the aftermath of last month's accident in Quebec.
Selig said he had also in touch with town emergency personnel to ensure they are prepared for any potential mishap.
Pan Am officials could not be reached for comment Saturday.
Selig said he had notified other communities of the letter, including Exeter, Newmarket, Rollinsford and Dover.
"We would like to get a written description of the type of material that is transported along the rail line and also an explanation in terms of what specific protocols are followed to ensure the safety of that cargo," he said. "Based upon that response, we would certainly review the material and follow up as needed."
Information from: Foster's Daily Democrat, http://www.fosters.com