An emergency regulation issued last month previously took effect on Saturday, June 7 requiring "railroads to notify states of the specific routes they will use when transporting more than 1 million barrels of Bakken crude. Such oil "may be more flammable than traditional heavy crude," the U.S. Department of Transportation warned," writes Lifsher [also see KQED blog.]
However, Valero Energy spokesman Chris Howe appeared to dispute the regulator's warning.
"There is nothing inherently more dangerous about one crude than another. They are all flammable," he told Tony Bizjak of The Sacramento Bee.
It should be noted that when talking of increased crude-by-rail shipments to California, it's important to distinguish types of crude. The oil sands crude from Alberta does not pose the public safety threat that the higher volatility Bakken crude presents.