New regulations to secure rail traffic

Nov. 13, 2008 at 8:10 PM

WASHINGTON, Nov. 13 (UPI) -- The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has released new security rules for freight and passenger rail systems designed to counter potential threats.

The new DHS regulations will establish protocols on handling and transferring security-sensitive material like chlorine and anhydrous ammonia, among other dangerous chemicals. The regulations also will require reporting on the locations of containers to the Transportation Security Administration.

Additionally the new rules will require freight and passenger rail carriers to establish an official coordinator designated to act as a liaison with the TSA and file reports on security concerns. The rules also will give the TSA clear authority to conduct inspections, the DHS reported.

"By striking a sensible balance of security guidelines with certain regulatory requirements, we're enabling the rail and chemical industries to be stronger partners," Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said in a statement.

"The results are sound security measures without excessively burdening owners and operators."

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