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Rail News: Federal Legislation & Regulation

Canadian transport minister addresses rail safety at working group meeting

Canadian Minister of Transport Lisa Raitt yesterday attended a Federation of Canadian Municipalities' National Municipal Rail Safety Working Group meeting in Ottawa to gather opinions on ways to on improve risk assessments, emergency planning and response capabilities, and increase insurance requirements for railroads and shippers.

The meeting was one of a series of ongoing discussions with Federation of Canadian Municipalities representatives to foster a two-way dialogue and exchange information on rail transportation in Canada.

Transport Canada continues to work with all stakeholders to enhance rail safety and the transportation of dangerous goods, said Raitt in a press release. Since the tragic July 2013 derailment in Lac-Mégantic, Quebec, the agency has issued an emergency directive on railway operations, as well as two other directives: one on the classification of crude oil, and the other on railroads sharing information on hazardous materials shipments with municipalities and first responders.

"Maintaining safe railway transportation is a shared responsibility amongst international partners, provinces, territories, municipalities and industry," said Raitt. "By working together with our partners, by sharing information and providing tools and resources, we can make Canada's railway system safer and more secure."

Meanwhile, Raitt, has appointed Tom Maville as a temporary member of the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) for a one-year term. His primary responsibility will be as an arbitrator for rail service-level agreement disputes.

Maville has more than 40 years of experience in the freight-rail and passenger transportation industries, extensive knowledge of railway practices and policies, and expertise in alternative dispute resolution, said Raitt. Since 1996, he has served as a transportation consultant, advising Canadian railroads, federal and provincial governments, rail shippers and major ports. Maville  has participated in major rail and marine policy reviews carried out by the federal government, and has provided advice to government departments and agencies on matters relating to rail mergers and acquisitions, said Raitt.

Prior to establishing his own practice, Maville held various positions at Canadian Pacific and the Canadian Transport Commission (now the CTA), and worked for the federal government in the transportation.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 1/23/2014