Shipments of oil via the nation's railroads tripled between 2011 and 2012; that growth will likely continue as oil producers seek alternative markets for the highest returns and refiners look to replace expensive foreign imports with cheaper domestic crudes. Pipelines still transport the vast majority of oil in the U.S., and therefore they currently take the vast majority of criticism for oil spills. In this video, Fool.com contributor Aimee Duffy looks at the numbers behind the safety records for trains and pipelines, and ponders what investors should think about going forward.

It's easy to forget the necessity of midstream operators that seamlessly transport oil and gas throughout the United States. Kinder Morgan is one of these operators, and one that investors should commit to memory due to its sheer size - it's the third-largest energy company in the U.S. - not to mention its enormous potential for profits. In The Motley Fool's premium research report on Kinder Morgan, we break down the company's growing opportunity - as well as the risks to watch out for - in order to uncover whether it's a buy or a sell. To determine whether this dividend giant is right for your portfolio, simply click here now to claim your copy of this invaluable investor's resource.

The article Is There Too Much Risk in Oil By Rail? originally appeared on Fool.com.

Fool contributor Aimee Duffy has no position in any stocks mentioned. Fool contributor Tyler Crowe has no position in any stocks mentioned. For more energy information, follow them on Twitter, @TMFDuffy and @TylerCroweFool. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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