OLYMPIA — Gov. Jay Inslee wants federal regulators to issue an emergency order requiring safety inspectors to physically walk the rail lines in the hours before Bakken crude oil is transported.
In a letter to the railroad administration’s chief, Inslee called current federal inspection standards “insufficient to protect our communities from the imminent threat of fires, spills, and collisions that result from oil train derailments,” The Columbian reported Sunday.
Inslee wants the tracks to be inspected every day, at a minimum, and inspected at least 24-hours prior to oil transportation.
Inslee’s call comes after an oil train headed to Tacoma derailed in the Columbia River Gorge, in the town of Mosier, Oregon, last month.
A spokesman for BNSF Railway — which hauls the bulk of crude through the state — said BNSF inspect tracks daily and requires walking inspections of all the switches.