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Train carrying oil explodes, threatens southern wetland and river

Much of the United States and our everyday functions run on oil. Currently, that is just the fact of life. Oil is a commodity for which there is demand, but it doesn't get where it is wanted with a simple snap of the fingers. It is drilled and then transported. The oil industry and its moving parts can result in danger.

Early yesterday, a fiery incident served as proof of that danger. A train carrying crude oil through Alabama derailed, and the danger didn't stop there. Oil is precious and potentially hazardous cargo. In this case, oil got out of some of the train cars and caused a severe explosion.

There is the damage that has already been done at the accident site, including damaged train cars and land destroyed by the fire. But environmentalists worry that there might be more to worry about in regards to the accident's impact on the environment.

Reuters reports that the train explosion took place in a wetlands that feeds into the Tombigbee River. Conservation efforts to prevent oil getting into the waterway have been implemented, but what if those don't work? What if it is not enough? What if this is just the beginning of other oil train accidents that will take place in the future?

It is becoming more common for oil to be moved by rail. When those railways go over wetlands and incidents like this occur, environmental advocates must take steps to protect the rivers and other waterways. Even with stricter regulations, preventing water contamination comes down to people abiding by the laws and not giving into negligence.

An environmental lawyer can help those who believe that the quality of their rivers or other waters has been compromised by unethical actions.

Source: Reuters, "Train carrying crude oil derails, cars ablaze in Alabama," Edward Mcallister, Nov. 8, 2013

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