Grist | A Beacon in the Smog, May 2, 2014
By Joe Smyth, Grist Guest Contributor
A CSX train hauling about 8,000 tons of coal from Pennsylvania to Southern Maryland derailed on Thursday in Bowie, Marlyand, highlighting the risks of transporting fossil fuels less than 24 hours after another CSX train carrying Bakken crude oil exploded in Lynchburg, Virginia. Aerial photos taken by Greenpeace photographer Tim Aubry of the coal train derailment on Friday show that boom has been laid around the area as workers began to remove the several carloads of coal that were spilled.
The Baltimore Sun notes that “The line where the derailment occurred in Bowie is also a freight line, officials said — raising questions about the combined impact the Baltimore and Bowie incidents will have on freight movements in the region, including out of the port of Baltimore.”
Joel Connelly at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer writes that the “accidents striking the CSX Railroad in the East this week are not putting Northwest minds at ease about oil and possibly coal trains passing through Puget Sound cities.” Indeed, Sightline Institute researcher Eric de Place noticed that new “safer” tank cars were involved in the Lynchburg, VA, oil train fire.