April 26, 2019 - Fort Worth Star-Telegram - Gordon Dickson -
Some tanker cars involved in a fiery train derailment Wednesday in south Fort Worth were older model rail cars that are considered less safe for transporting flammable liquids than newer models, federal officials say.
The older tanker cars, known as DOT-111s, are being phased out and will no longer be allowed on U.S. railroads by 2023, according to federal regulations. The DOT-111s are being replaced by DOT-117 tanker cars, which feature thicker protective shells, head shields (to reduce collision impact) and an additional thermal protective layer of fiber.
But the derailment of the Union Pacific Railroad train in a somewhat-isolated area of Fort Worth near East Berry Street and South Riverside Drive — which triggered a massive fire fueled by more than 100,000 gallons of ethanol from the tanker cars — presents a fascinating case for the National Transportation Safety Board to probe because the train also was carrying many of the newer model DOT-117 tanker cars.