Oil shipments to Washington state are more flammable

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by GARY CHITTIM / KING 5 News

Bio | Email | Follow: @gchittimK5

KING5.com

Posted on January 2, 2014 at 7:42 PM

Updated Thursday, Jan 2 at 9:52 PM

Federal transportation officials issued a safety alert Thursday warning that oil from the Bakken fields in North Dakota appears to be more dangerous than oil from other fields.

Bakken oil accounts for the current and projected spikes in rail shipments to Washington state ports.

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) issued the alert Thursday which it said was to “notify the general public, emergency responders and shippers and carriers that recent derailments and resulting fires indicate that the type of crude oil being transported from the Bakken region may be more flammable than traditional heavy crude oil.”

The report was issued after a derailment of an oil train in North Dakota led to a massive blast and fire on Monday. The PHMSA said that blast and others involving Bakken oil appear to more volatile than usual.

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