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U.S. senator says rail tank car safety rules due in weeks

Thursday, 9 Jan 2014 | 12:54 PM ET

WASHINGTON, Jan 9 (Reuters) - New U.S. standards for rail tank cars should come in "weeks, not months", Senator John Hoeven of North Dakota said on Thursday after a meeting with Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.

A spate of derailments and explosions of tank cars carrying crude oil have sparked safety concerns about fuel shipments on the tracks.

Secretary Foxx has made addressing this issue a top priority and he plans to visit North Dakota's energy patch in coming weeks to see things on the ground, Hoeven said on Thursday after an hour-long meeting with Foxx and Cynthia Quarterman, who oversees dangerous train shipments as administrator of the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration.

(Reporting By Patrick Rucker, Valerie Volcovici and Timothy Gardner; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)