SACRAMENTO -- Amid public concern over several train accidents and explosions in North America over the past year, and increased transport of crude oil into California by rail, two state Senate committees will hold a joint public hearing on emergency response to rail accidents on Wednesday.

In Northern California, much of the crude-by-rail is headed for Contra Costa County, home to four oil refineries. A fifth refinery is located in nearby Benicia.

There will be presentations by officials of several state agencies responsible for emergency response:

  • Office of Emergency Services

  • Department of Fish and Wildlife, Office of Spill Prevention and Response

  • Department of Forestry and Fire Protection

  • Department of Toxic Substances Control

  • Certified Unified Program Agencies (CUPAS), including the Sacramento County Environmental Management Department

    The hearing, by the Environmental Quality and Natural Resources and Water committees, will be at 9:30 a.m. in the California State Capitol, Room 3191, in Sacramento.

    Public participation is invited.

    The hearing will be televised. More information is available at http://senate.ca.gov/tvschedule.

    Contact Tom Lochner at 510-262-2760. Follow him at twitter.com/tomlochner



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