Railroad has tentatively agreed to pay $71,700 for faililng to timely report leaks of crude oil along the state’s railway system

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OLYMPIA — BNSF Railway has agreed to pay $71,700 for failing to timely report crude oil leaks and other hazardous material spills along the state’s railway under a proposed settlement agreement.

The Daily Herald reports that under the deal, the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission would suspend $40,000 of the full penalty if BNSF doesn’t commit new violations of the statewide accident reporting rules in the next year.

The company initially faced up to $700,000 in potential fines. In March, the commission issued a complaint alleging that BNSF failed to report 14 releases to the state within the required time period. The incidents occurred at BNSF facilities throughout the state, including Seattle, Vancouver, Blaine and Everett.

BNSF spokeswoman Courtney Wallace says that while the company agreed to pay a monetary penalty, it doesn’t agree with every allegation outlined in the original complaint.