There's a big setback for a company that wants to move more crude through the Sacramento area.
The San Luis Obispo County Planning Commission rejected plans by Phillips 66 Company, that would allow it to receive oil shipments by trains three times a week. This follows the City of Benicia rejecting Valero's plans on expanding shipments.
Activists say the shipments are just too dangerous at such high volumes. The crude oil cars already come through the Sacramento area just not as often as these refineries hoped.
In Davis, the "blast zone", if a crude car exploded would include places like downtown, parts of the university and in the community of Slater's Court where Roger Ford lives.
"I have no idea what is coming down the train tracks at nighttime you just hear click click click click," Ford said.
A few of those cars might be transporting crude and with big derailments in places like Canada and North Dakota, neighbors and politicians are weary of more black gold flowing down the tracks.
"Our concern is about risk, it's about the safety of our people," said Yolo County supervisor Don Saylor.
The volatile liquid heated up environmentalists and officials, like Mr. Saylor, with Phillips 66 and Valero's plans to expand operations. In a matter of two weeks both oil company's plans were rejected.
"Every route that railroad exists upon, there are cities," Saylor said.
Like Downtown Sacramento, Davis and Roseville. Saylor said these places would have been the routes for both of these companies to transport if they were able to expand.
"We need to make sure everyone's bottom line includes public safety," Saylor said.
He said the City of Benicia started the trend, standing up for the people, sticking it to the oil giant. Saylor said he believes more cities around the nation will follow in Benicia's footsteps.
We contacted Valero and we're still waiting to hear back. An attorney for Valero Oil told the Sacramento Bee, the City of Benicia acted illegally when it rejected Valero's plan. The spokesman also told the Bee the company will continue to consider all of its options.
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