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Rail News: Safety

Raitt highlights rail safety changes made since Lac-Megantic tragedy


Canada's Minister of Transport Lisa Raitt and other Canadian officials yesterday marked the second anniversary of the deadly train derailment in Lac-Megantic, Quebec.

On July 6, 2013, a Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway train carrying 72 tank cars of crude oil derailed and exploded in downtown Lac-Megantic, killing 47 people and destroying much of the downtown area.

Raitt used the anniversary to review the new rail safety rules and regulations that resulted from the tragic event, including stronger tank-car standards for hauling crude oil and other hazardous and explosive materials by rail.

"Safety is Transport Canada's top priority. And in the wake of the accident, we took immediate, concrete action to further protect Canadians and maintain the safety and integrity of the Canadian rail system," said Raitt in her prepared statement.

"We introduced even stricter rules for securing trains and we ordered trains carrying dangerous goods to slow down when traveling through highly urbanized areas,” she said. “In May, we introduced a stronger, tougher tank car standard, the TC-117, for the transportation of flammable liquids in North America, further protecting communities in both Canada and the United States."

Raitt, Transport Canada officials and other “partners and stakeholders” continue to meet to discuss ways to enhance rail safety, she said.

A list of safety measures that Transport Canada has taken since the accident can be found here.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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