Grain handlers seek stricter rail rules to avoid logjam

BY ROD NICKEL
WINNIPEG Manitoba Tue Jun 10, 2014 5:09pm EDT

(Reuters) - Grain handlers are lobbying the Canadian government for even stricter rules requiring railroads to allocate thousands of railcars to them each week in hopes of stopping an unprecedented crop logjam from getting worse.

Tougher rules could ensure that U.S. and other buyers have ample access to Canadiangrains. They would also give grain handlers priority over other shippers, including oil companies, which have moved a rapidly growing, though still relatively small, volume of crude by rail.

A record-large harvest and frigid weather had snarled the transportation system last fall and winter, leaving millions of tonnes of grain stuck in farm bins.

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