The Efficacy of Crude Oil Training Drills

PAUSE | May 6, 2014 | Press Release

Today and tomorrow Governor Cuomo has authorized a training drill at the Port of Albany to simulate risks associated with ignitable liquids such as the fracked Bakken crude oil which is coming into Albany by the millions of gallons each day. 

The drill is being conducted by the state Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services. Among the types of situations they are training for are the DOT-111 derailments and explosions that have occurred 5 times since July. The most recent of these was last Wednesday in Lynchberg, VA. In each case fire fighters were helpless in the face of the conflagration and were forced to wait until the fire burned itself out.

While there is much first responders can do after such a catastrophe, PAUSE questions the wisdom of assuming municipal fire departments can do anything to suppress the fireball while it is burning. Richard Edinger, Vice Chairman of the International Association of Fire Chiefs' Hazardous Materials Committee, said at the National Transportation Safety Board hearing on 4/23/14 "No fire department except those at some refineries has sufficient equipment and materials to deal with exploding oil-filled tank cars."

What we need from our First Responders is the capacity to deal with the aftermath of such horrific explosions such as the one that decimated Lac Megantic last July. This includes funding for training and equipment for the long emergency that follows these detonations. The Governor needs to tell the Dept. of Environmental Conservation to conduct a full Environmental Impact review of Big Oil's plan to turn New York into a global crude oil hub.

Finally, the third National Climate Assessment was released today at the White House. This is the product of years of work by over two hundred climate scientists who all agree that climate change is primarily caused human induced emissions. The processes of fracking the Bakken shale and strip mining the Alberta tar sands are leading contributors of human induced emissions. (see attached) Instead of trying to cope with the consequences of fossil fuel production, PAUSE reiterates the call to switch to renewable sources of energy as outlined in this study by world class scientists from Cornell and Stanford: http://www.stanford.edu/group/efmh/jacobson/Articles/I/NewYorkWWSEnPolicy.pdf

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commented 2014-05-07 18:22:14 -0400 · Flag
Thanks, Andrew, for posting. There were a number of local TV outlets plus an AP reporter down at the training today. So they crowded around Susan and I for an interview. What fun :)
PAUSE, People of Albany United for Safe Energy
PAUSE is a grassroots group of individuals who have come together to promote safe, sustainable energy and fight for environmental justice. We engage the greater public to stop the fossil fuel industry’s assault on the people of Albany and our environment.