BNSF settles with Washington state over spill fines

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OLYMPIA, WASH. — BNSF Railway has settled with the state of Washington for not reporting leaks of hazardous materials like crude oil.

The Associated Press is reporting that the state fined the railroad $71,700 for not reporting in a timely manor the leak of materials. The fines were part of a settlement between the state’s Utilities and Transportation Commission and BNSF on Monday.

The company originally was faced with fines that totaled almost $700,000, which commissioners said would have given the railroad more of an incentive to follow reporting procedures.

This past March, regulators complained that BNSF allegedly was tardy in reporting 14 accounts of release of materials to the state. Cities in the state pointed out in the complaint include Seattle, Blaine, Vancouver, and Everett.

A BNSF spokeswoman tells the newspaper that the railroad is currently reviewing Monday’s order.
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