Tag Archives: Rail

Plains All American to buy terminals for $500M

HOUSTON (AP) — Plains All American Pipeline LP said Wednesday that it will buy rail terminals used to store and transfer crude oil for $500 million to help it prepare for increased U.S. oil production.

Plains operates oil pipelines across the country. By owning the terminals, it will also give the company more control over the oil it moves and allow it to avoid paying storage costs at rented terminals.

The Houston company is buying the terminals from U.S. Development Group, a privately held company that owns crude oil, petrochemical and ethanol terminal and storage centers across the U.S. and Canada.

The deal includes three terminals in the oil country of Texas, Colorado and North Dakota, one rail unloading terminal in Louisiana and another unloading terminal that’s being built near Bakersfield, Calif. Crude oil loading capacity from these terminals is expected to total about 250,000 barrels per day.

The Plains deal comes as U.S. oil production grows. Monthly crude production reached its highest level since 1998 in September, said the Energy Information Administration on Tuesday. Production is growing the fastest in Texas and North Dakota, where two of the acquired terminals are located.

The United States could overtake Saudi Arabia as the world’s biggest producer of crude oil by 2020, driven by high prices and new drilling methods, the International Energy Association said last month.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/business/energy/article/Plains-All-American-to-buy-terminals-for-500M-4096109.php

All aboard! Coastal rail service shakes off corrosion

Southport Lumber Company’s first rail car shipment has left the North Spit, and is on it’s way to Eugene.

Things got off to a rocky start Thursday morning, as the train left about four hours behind schedule.

General manager of the railroad, Tom Foster says, that’s to be expected when you’ve had fours years of inactivity on the rail line.

“Last night, we got everything lined up and ready to go and we were anticipating leaving early this morning and being out of here and on our way to Eugene with 12 loads. We’ve got the 12 loads, we’ve just had a little slower time than what we thought,” explains Foster.

He goes onto say, that the line is suffering from what he calls “rusty rail syndrome.”

Because it’s so wet here on the coast, corrosion piles up on the tracks, making the connection to the crossings inoperable.

For now, the port will have two people manning each crossing.

But all the trouble is not in vain. Foster says, Southport is pleased with the rail because it’s giving them another option.

“Before, the only option out of here was truck. Now all of a sudden, you know, they’ve sold 12 loads, they’ve got more loads sold next week, we’re gonna have more cars down here. We worked out some agreements with Union Pacific Railroad that’s gonna allow us to do that, so there’s gonna be a lot more movement both here,” replies Foster.

You can expect to see one train a week, running south on Monday or Tuesday, and heading north on Thursday or Friday.

And just to give you a comparison, this 12 load train hauls the equivalent of 36 trucks.

SOURCE: http://www.kcby.com/news/local/132277088.html

Network Rail Protecting Royal Albert Bridge from Corrosion

Around 50,000 new bolts are being used in Network Rail’s major project, which started in late May, to restore Brunel’s famous Royal Albert bridge that was built in 1859.

These bolts – as ‘precious and mighty as Brunel’s legendary golden rivet bolt’ – will be vital to keep the landmark structure strong for the next century and beyond.

The £10m improvement scheme will see engineers investing nearly 2m hours of work over the next two years to strengthen and repaint Royal Albert bridge, bringing it back to its former glory.

Around 35,000 litres of special paint will also be used to spruce up and protect the bridge’s steel façade from corrosion.

Mark Langman, route director for Network Rail said:

“We have a big task to transform the railway on Great Western in the coming years and the improvement on Royal Albert bridge plays a big part.

“The Royal Albert bridge remains a vital rail link and has carried more than 1 billion tonnes of rail traffic since it was built. This is the most complex refurbishment work ever and our work will inject a new lease of life and keep the landmark bridge robust for many years to come.”

To be carried out in five stages, the work will start concurrently from each end of the bridge and it is carefully designed to minimize disruption to the community and passengers.

The scaffolding will be encapsulated to create a contained safe working environment to prevent dust and debris from falling from the structure and to reduce any noise pollution.

The encapsulation is sealed to help reduce any noise and its roof is also pitched to prevent accumulation of rain water, which could add weight to the structure. In addition, the encapsulation will form a tunnel around the track, so that engineers can continue to access the structure when trains are running.

A large industrial vacuum cleaner will be used to remove all waste, including grit produced during the blasting process. This waste will be removed daily to prevent any contamination to the environment.

The structure was listed Grade 1 in 1952 by the English Heritage, which has also backed this project.