Thoughts, ideas, photos, and stories.

Pipeline or Railway?


When I see a long, long train of tankers carrying crude oil, I have the pipeline vs. railway argument with myself all over again. You can see that this train is in town. It stayed there for days.


Right in the middle of the busy traffic area in town, this train and its load of oil products sat. Maybe it was empty, but I still wouldn’t have wanted to throw in a match.dscn6836a

When I have to stop at a railway crossing for one of these long fuel trains, I hope that this is not the time it will derail and barbecue me.dscn6884aCan you imagine if in the three or four days that this train sat without budging right in the middle of town, something had gone wrong — maybe a second train coming on the wrong track — what a disaster that could be? dscn6842a

I thought of the poor victims at Lac Megantic and wondered if maybe a pipeline really is a better solution. I don’t know, but these trains worry me.

Author: wordsfromanneli

Writing, travel, photography, nature, more writing....

20 thoughts on “Pipeline or Railway?

  1. Good questions. You may have decided on the answer through these photos and the wondering out loud….

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Tankers, trains, pipelines – they all have their dangers. Let’s go solar!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I think I’d prefer the pipeline. A tank car is limited in what it can spill. The pipeline can drain for a very long time.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’d take the pipeline hands down for people’s safety, however, they do need more oversight and some real teeth in penalties for violations of their rules.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. This train isn’t blocking/cutting the town in two is it? Trains doing that in my little podunk town back home are fined after a certain amount of time. That is the CN, or Canadian National Railway which has a tunnel under the Saint Claire river into Michigan from the Toronto area in Canada.

    Liked by 1 person

    • No, it’s sitting on an overpass. Or is it an underpass? The cars go underneath. But it is definitely very present, right in the center of town. I’m sure if something happened to one car (like another train on the wrong track), the others would catch fire as well. This is the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway. They aren’t blocking access, but the cars contain volatile materials.


  6. There’s not one day I don’t think of Lac Megantic. We have hundreds (if not more) of these lined up in the city. The ones in Lac-Megantic were on their way here … to our city, and the big refinery here.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Anneli,
    I’d go for the pipeline, especially considering the overaged railroad system/network here in the US.
    Have a great week,

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Pingback: Pipeline or Railway? — wordsfromanneli | Oilfield Business Network

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