Company Fines US$361,000 for Crude Oil Derailment

Published Date : Feb 25, 2015

A civil fine of US$361,000 was proposed by environmental officers at Virginia against CSX Transportation Inc. for a derailment in 2014 that dumped 30,000 gallons of crude oil in and around the James River. 

As revealed by sources, an order of consent was released on Monday by the state Department of Environmental Quality stating that CSX will have to pay a sum of US$18,574 for costs incurred on investigating the incident that occurred on April last year. Seventeen oil tankers were derailed in the incident, and three of them went directly into the James. The local officials also reported of an explosion that caused dense black smoke and flames.

However, it was reported by the Virginia state authorities that no damage to the water quality of James was made, since the 27,000 gallons of oil that was spilled on to the water was burnt off by the explosion that resulted into fire. The consent order states that 245 gallons of water that made into the river water were recovered but 390 gallons of oil still remained in the environment. 

The railroad company of CSX has been involved in multiple incidents of derailment. Last week it was reported that West Virginia went into the state of emergency after one of the oil trains of CSX derailed and exploded while passing through the town of Mount Carbon. As a direct consequence to the incident almost 1,000 people were evacuated from their homes. The crude oil ended up into the Kanawha River after the derailment. The oil caught fire and burned for two complete days. 

The CSX derailments that occurred last week and the incident of last spring involved the unit trains that carried crude oil from the Bakken shale of North Dakota. The unit trains are basically freight trains that usually carry oil or coal and can have almost 60 to 200 cars.