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Rep. Grim Commends Federal Railroad Administration for Final Ruling on Emergency Breathing Apparatuses

The final ruling will require emergency breathing apparatuses on trains transporting hazardous materials
January 29, 2024
Michele Grim News

COLUMBUS – State Rep. Michele Grim (D-Toledo) today commends the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) for taking proactive steps to protect rail workers in the instance of exposure to hazardous materials by mandating emergency escape breathing apparatuses (EEBAs) on hazmat trains. This ruling comes nearly one year after the East Palestine train derailment where workers and local residents were exposed to 100,000 gallons of hazardous materials. 

“Freight industry workers and surrounding communities alike are in desperate need of protection. The East Palestine derailment was the ultimate proof of that. Companies are incentivized to keep trains long, nearly unmanageable, and carrying a multitude of materials, including hazardous ones. As long as that is the case, safeguards will need to be in place to protect workers. I’m pleased the FRA is taking practical steps to ensure worker safety,” said Rep. Grim, ranking member on the Ohio House Transportation Committee.

The new rule will require railroads to provide and maintain emergency escape breathing apparatuses for train crew employees and any others who could be exposed to hazardous materials. Railroads must also train their crewmembers on how to use these apparatuses.