Oil train classroom-on-rails makes stop in Albany, N.Y. in multistate safety-training tour

After a three-day training program in Albany, the safety train will travel to Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois.
By MARY ESCH, Associated Press Published: June 6, 2014

A rolling classroom-on-rails, complete with four tanker cars and a flatbed rigged with a variety of valves and fittings, made a stop Thursday at the Port of Albany as part of a multistate tour providing enhanced safety training to first responders in light of increased railroad shipments of North Dakota crude oil.

The railroad is conducting a three-day training program at Albany’s Hudson River port before taking its Safety Train to other cities along a route through Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois.

“The vast majority of the oil we move is on this route,” said Skip Elliott, CSX’s vice president for environment and safety.

“We do anticipate it growing. There’s been an energy boom in this country,” he said.

The CSX railroad transports crude oil produced in North Dakota’s Bakken Shale region to coastal refineries.

Elliott said the railroad moves two or three oil trains a day, each with about 100 tanker cars holding 30,000 gallons each.

Elliott said that amounts to about one percent of CSX’s overall freight traffic.