Cal OES Hazardous Materials Section
The California Governor's Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) has a long history of meeting the challenge of responding to major events, whether it involves earthquakes, fires, flooding, drought or hazardous material spills. The mission of Cal OES is: "We protect lives and property, build capabilities, and support our communities for a resilient California." This mission is achieved by serving the public through effective collaboration in preparing for, protection against, responding to, recovering from, and mitigating the impacts of all hazards and threats. Today, there is a new vulnerability to California in the way of oil by rail.
Historically oil has come into California by marine vessels. California is the third-biggest refining state in the United States and is expecting a huge increase of oil by rail from places such as Canada and North Dakota. Over the past year, there has been a dramatic increase in oil by rail coming into California. From 2012 to 2013, the State realized an increase of approximately five million barrels of oil by rail, with current projections estimating the increases to reach 150 million barrels annually. Recent reports indicate that the Western United States may bring 500,000 barrels of light oil by rail a day in 2015. The increase in transporting this highly flammable "light" crude oil from Bakken Shale production area will result in raising the threat to Californians and our environment by increased risk of derailments, explosions, fires, accidental releases, and the potential for crimes and terrorist acts. These emerging threats have placed California communities in a vulnerable position.
The Cal OES, Fire and Rescue Branch, Hazardous Materials Section will keep tabs on this ever expanding field and provide Safety Alerts, Emergency Orders, and general information for our stakeholders. For more detailed information, please contact Chief Thomas E. Campbell at (916) 845-8751; firstname.lastname@example.org