Investing in railroad infrastructure supports economic growth, protects Oregonians

As Oregon business leaders, we have a commitment to growing the economy while protecting the environment we call home. To uphold this promise, we must constantly invest in infrastructure that helps us safely and effectively transport critical business resources across our great State. 

One of the most impactful ways businesses can do this is to invest in rail transportation infrastructure for energy and fuel resources. Transporting fuel by rail saves significant transportation costs and eliminates safety risks that could arise on the road. In fact, did you know a single rail train can transport the same volume of crude oil as 280 tanker trucks?

Here are a few other facts that you may not have known about Oregon’s investment in our railroad infrastructure. In just the past two years:

  • Railroads have provided comprehensive hazmat response training to more than 2,300 Oregon emergency responders.
  • Union Pacific (UP), the operator of the rail line on the Oregon side of the Gorge, has replaced all lag bolts on track curves in the Gorge, adjusted speeds, increased its rigorous track maintenance and inspections, and strategically positioned response equipment at key points along the routes on which most oil travels in the state.
  • UP has also deployed leading technologies such as laser and ultrasound testing to identify rail imperfections, acoustic wheel vibration tracking, and trackside sensors that perform real-time analysis on every car in the UP system.
  • And the petroleum industry has invested more than $3 billion since 2011 for new tank cars and to retro fit existing tanks to meet or exceed federal safety standards.

 North America’s freight railroads deliver more than 99.9 percent ofall crude oil and other hazardous materials shipments without incident. A continued investment in our railroads plays a huge role in this success.  Let’s continue to work together to keep railroads a viable, economical and safe means to transport critical business resources.