PHMSA LNG by Rail Rule Finalized
Final Rule Issued for Transport of LNG by Rail
The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), in consultation with the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), issued a final rule authorizing the bulk transportation of LNG by rail. The rule will permit the bulk transportation of LNG in specified tank cars with enhanced outer tank requirements and additional operational controls.
With FRA approval, LNG has previously been authorized for transport by rail in a portable tank. Federal Hazardous Materials Regulations have also authorized the transportation of other flammable cryogenic materials for many years in DOT-113 tank cars. Importantly, this final rule also incorporates newly designated additional safety requirements, such as an enhanced thicker carbon steel outer tank.
The rule also requires remote monitoring of the pressure and location of LNG tank cars. In addition, to improve braking, the rule requires a two-way end of train or distributed power system when a train is transporting 20 or more tank cars loaded with LNG in a continuous block, or 35 or more such tank cars of LNG anywhere in the train consist. Furthermore, the rule requires railroads to conduct route risk assessments to evaluate safety and security.