Energy Policy: An oil-laden train collides with another and bursts into flames in a small American town, proving why pipelines are safer and why environmentalist opposition to a pipeline from Canada is misguided.
Casselton, N.D., had a near brush with tragedy after a train of tank cars carrying crude oil derailed, resulting in fiery explosions and a call from the town's mayor for a re-examination of how such fuel is transported across the United States.
The railroad runs right through the middle of Casselton, a town of 2,400 people about 25 miles west of Fargo, and Mayor Ed McConnell said dozens of people could have been killed had the derailments had occurred in the town, not just outside.
It's time, he said, to "have a conversation" with federal lawmakers about the dangers of transporting oil by rail.
"There have been numerous derailments in this area," he told the Associated Press. "It's almost gotten to the point that it looks like not if we're going to have an accident, it's when. We dodged a bullet by having it out of town, but this is too close for comfort."
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