WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Steve Daines today met with Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) Acting Administrator Timothy Butters in Billings about the ongoing efforts to clean up the Poplar Pipeline spill into the Yellowstone River.
Daines pressed Butters on the agency’s slow hiring process and his efforts to fill over 100 open inspector positions. During the meeting, Daines questioned Butters on their efforts to find safer ways to transport oil as well as other ways to reduce American dependence on foreign oil.
Daines also secured a commitment to work together with state and legislative official to increase transparency and ease concerns related to the agency.
“We must remain vigilant and explore every possibility to increase the safety and efficiency in transporting oil throughout the country,” Daines stated. “I enjoyed the opportunity to discuss with Acting Administrator Butters the specific steps we can take to not only make PHMSA more efficient while reducing spills that harm our environment and productivity.”
The Poplar Pipeline ruptured near Glendive on January 17, 2015, spilling approximately 30,000 gallons of crude oil into the Yellowstone River. At the time of the spill, the line was carrying Bakken crude oil.
Butters is in Montana visiting the site where the failed pipeline will be removed.