Despite recent crashes, rail still safest way to haul oil, S.A. expert says

by Gary Cooper / KENS 5

News report by KENS-5 San Antonio, TX

SAN ANTONIO – A train carrying crude oil derailed on a Philadelphia bridge on Monday is the latest in a series of train accidents involving hauling crude. A San Antonio-based expert who provides emergency response services to the oil industry is offering his expertise preventing similar derailments in the Eagle Ford Shale. Bob Andrews, President and CEO of the Bob Andrews Group, provides emergency response services and safety consulting for oil companies, including those in the Bakken Shale in north Dakota which produces 750,000 barrels of oil a day. The Eagle Ford Shale in south Texas is projected to produce 2 million barrels of oil a day by the year 2020. He said despite the recent accidents, rail is still the safest way to haul oil. “Just as flying on an airliner is very safe, from time to time things can occur, and we know that so it’s the industry’s job to prepare for an accident should it occur,”  Andrews said. At the end of 2014, a train carrying oil from the Bakken Shale derailed in rural north Dakota and caught fire. It took several days for the fire to be put out.  Andrews said keeping oil better contained is possible, “however the problem is that right now there is no capacity to build these new cars, and with regard to training and rolling out new emergency response products like we have, it’s going to take some time for the industry to catch up,” Andrews believes the greater risk of dangerous oil spills is in the north and northeast United States. He said the oil industry infrastructure is safer in south Texas and the fire response is better equipped to handle an incident.