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Rail News: Federal Legislation & Regulation

Garneau orders speed restrictions on key, higher-risk trains

Transport Minister Marc Garneau
Photo – Transport Canada


Canada's Transport Minister Marc Garneau late last week announced new rail safety measures aimed at reducing train derailments.

The ministerial order requires speed restrictions for the following:
• key trains that have one or more loaded tank cars of dangerous goods that are toxic by inhalation or contain 20 or more tank cars containing dangerous goods; and
• higher-risk trains that carry crude oil or liquefied petroleum gases in a continuous block of 20 or more tank cars or 35 or more tank cars dispersed throughout the train.

In addition to the speed restrictions, the order directs railroads to address track maintenance and inspection management.

The latest order follows measures implemented in February in response to crude-oil train derailments that occurred over the winter.

"I recognize that railway operations in Canada are carried out in a highly complex and difficult environment, but I believe that a strong response is warranted after the series of derailments of trains carrying crude oil," Garneau said in a press release. "The measures are being implemented to reduce main track derailments and encourage safe railway operations."