By Roy L Hales
More details have emerged in the eight days since a 96-car Union Pacific train, carrying crude oil, derailed at Mosier, Oregon. A railway spokesman announced that the probable cause of this accident was that the lag bolts failed in a number of consecutive rail ties. Though four cars ruptured, only one actually caught fire. Local firefighters battled throughout the night and finally succeeded in suppressing the fire in the early hours of the next day. Mosier’s sewage treatment plant was damaged and is still inoperable but, thanks to the assistance of the neighbouring town of Hood River, all but two of Mosier’s homes once again have water and sewage. The surrounding communities demonstrated how this near catastrophe galvanizes opposition to oil by rail at two press events this week.