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Railroads confront crude oil safety

Emergency personnel examined overturned oil tank cars after a train derailment near Vandergrift, Pa., on Feb. 13.
Emergency personnel examined overturned oil tank cars after a train derailment near Vandergrift, Pa., on Feb. 13.Jason Cohn/Reuters

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BILLINGS, Mont. — Railroads that haul volatile crude shipments have reached an agreement with U.S. transportation officials to adopt wide-ranging, voluntary safety measures after a string of explosive and deadly accidents.

The agreement between the U.S. Transportation Department and the Association of American Railroads was obtained Friday by The Associated Press.

It calls for railroads to slow down oil trains from 50 to 40 miles per hour through major cities, inspect tracks more frequently, and bolster emergency response planning along routes that carry trains hauling up to 3 million gallons of crude each.

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