Oil company Tesoro announced Monday it’s upgrading the fleet of tank cars it uses to carry crude oil by rail.
The company moves crude oil by train through the Pacific Northwest to its refinery in Anacortes, Washington.
Officials with the company said it will add 210 “enhanced” tank cars. According to Tesoro executives, the new tank cars exceed federal standards announced earlier this month.
A company spokeswoman said they expect to have about half of the cars in service before the end of the year.
Tesoro is working with Savage Industries on a joint-venture to build the largest crude oil by rail terminal on the West Coast at the Port of Vancouver, Washington.
If built, the cars would be used there as well as at the company’s Anacortes refinery.
Keith Casey, Tesoro’s executive vice-president of operations, said stronger tank cars are just part of the safety process.
“I don’t believe it is accurate to say there is any car that can be designed to completely prevent — depending on the amount of energy in a derailment — any loss of containment,” he said. “This car is certainly one of the most robust available and the most robust that we’re aware of.”
Casey wouldn’t say how many cars the company has in its fleet. A typical oil train is about 100 cars long.