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Tank Car Vent and Burn Process Study: Phase I

Document Series
Technical Reports
Federal Railroad Administration
Report Number
: DOT/FRA/ORD-07/26
Subject Rolling Stock
Hazardous materials, vent and burn, incident mitigations, tank car

The Transportation Technology Center, Inc. (TTCI), under Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA) Hazmat Transportation Safety Research and Development Strategic Plan, conducted a study of vent and burn as a method of hazardous materials incident mitigation. The purpose of the study was to develop guidelines and tools to aid emergency response personnel in determining when to use the vent and burn method and to help guide them through the procedure. TTCI reviewed past incidents and mathematically modeled various explosive charge parameters. TTCI evaluated commodities and tank car materials and configurations for applicability to the vent and burn method. TTCI developed a process map and an itemized checklist for responder use. The study concluded that, when carefully planned for and properly applied, vent and burn could be an effective method of mitigating a serious incident. TTCI made recommendations for process improvements and future testing. 

Last updated: Wednesday, June 12, 2024