BNSF Hit With EPA Fine

The Environmental Protection Agency has hit the BNSF Railroad with a one-and-a-half million dollar fine.

BNSF Railway Corporation has agreed to pay $1,513,750 to resolve alleged violations of the federal Clean Water Act.

According to the EPA, BNSF released approximately 117,500 gallons of heavy crude oil when one of its freight trains derailed outside of Doon, Iowa, in June 2018.

The EPA says the derailment occurred during heavy flooding in the area.

Impacts from the oil spill included an evacuation order for nearby residents, elevated levels of hazardous substances within the affected site, closure of nearby drinking water wells, destruction of crops, and deaths of at least three animals.

Discharges of pollutants, including oil, into federally protected waterways are violations of the Clean Water Act.

BNSF operates one of the largest railroad networks in North America.

“Illegal discharges of oil into streams, rivers and wetlands present a significant threat to human health and the environment,” said EPA Region 7 Administrator Meg McCollister.