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Top political leaders talk rail safety

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Jan 19, 2014 at 8:41 am

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — Top political leaders from North Dakota are questioning BNSF executives on their plans to prevent another train derailment like last month's crash and fire near Casselton.

Fargo Mayor Dennis Walaker told BNSF officials at a meeting in Fargo Saturday that residents are worried about a derailment in the city's downtown. Walaker believes the trains need to slow down.

BNSF Executive Vice President Roger Nober told the group that the company spent a record amount of money on safety improvements last year and will continue that investment.

North Dakota Sens. Heidi Heitkamp and John Hoeven led the meeting, which was attended by Representative Kevin Cramer and Governor Jack Dalrymple, a Casselton native.

There were no injuries in the fire and explosion. Officials asked Casselton residents to evacuate for 24 hours.

Mike Tanner

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