AGs Express View that Hazardous Materials Regulation Is on the Right Track

  • A coalition of 13 AGs wrote a comment letter to the U.S. Department of Transportation supporting a proposed rulemaking meant to close the informational gaps between railroads and first responders regarding hazardous material loads.
  • In the letter, the AGs expressed approval of proposed updates to the Hazardous Materials Regulations, which would require railroads to provide “train consist information” via electronic means to first responders along their railroad route to allow first responders access to all relevant information before an emergency occurs. The current rule only requires railroads to keep a physical, not electronic, version of the manifest of hazardous materials on trains.
  • The AGs also offer suggestions for expanding the proposed rulemaking to include a requirement that railroads utilize a data repository for submission of electronic train consist information, as well as a requirement that railroads coordinate with the appropriate state agencies to account for state-specific needs.