Kennedy welcomes new DOT measures to promote economic growth, rail safety

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U.S. Sen. John Kennedy

Today Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) praised the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration for issuing two final rules reducing burdensome regulations. The revisions modernize hazardous materials requirements that have negatively impacted shippers and manufacturers.

“Louisiana’s shippers and manufacturers have struggled for years under regulations that are unclear and unfair. I’m glad to see DOT finalize rules that make it easier for these companies to operate efficiently, create jobs and plan for the future. Smart policies support economic growth while keeping communities safe, and that’s finally what’s going into effect here,” said Kennedy.

These final rules contribute to a safer workplace for individuals who produce or transport certain hazardous materials, and Kennedy has long advocated for these policy updates.

One of the rules finalizes specifications for rail tank cars carrying hazardous materials. It promotes enhanced safety specifications for cars carrying materials, such as chlorine, that are poisonous when inhaled.

A second rule will phase out by December 31, 2027 rail tank cars that are not properly equipped to transport such materials. This provides clarity and certainty to shipping firms planning to phase out older tank cars.

“We thank Sen. Kennedy for his commitment to safety and commend DOT for adopting standards that are supported by extensive research. With clear and uniform federal rules in place, chemical manufacturers can now have greater confidence that the tank cars they purchase or lease have a proven track record and will deliver safety benefits for many years to come,” said Chris Jahn, President and CEO of the American Chemistry Council.

Last year, Kennedy received the inaugural Rail Safety Advocate Award for his commitment to making railways safe and efficient.