Secret Railroad Inspection Data Frustrates Spokane Officials
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Railroads appear to keep most data on their bridge inspections secret, even after a federal law allowed local officials to request the information.
The Spokesman Review reports that Spokane City Council President Ben Stuckart says he requested copies of Union Pacific and BNSF Railway bridge inspections, hoping to learn more about the condition of the infrastructure that supports trains carrying oil and other hazardous cargo.
He says he was expecting an engineer's analysis of the structures, but only got a one-page report for each bridge with little detail.
BNSF spokeswoman Courtney Wallace says the bridges are inspected at least twice a year, more than required by the federal government, and that the company will not run trains on any infrastructure it thinks could be unsafe.