Transport Minister Lisa Raitt should resign

I have no confidence in: Transport Canada, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada, the TSB’s Lac Megantic report, and Canadian railway safety.

You will remember when Transport Canada issued a new interpretation following the Lac Megantic rail tragedy. They made the following rule:

“The minimum operating crew requirement for a freight train or transfer carrying one or more loaded tank cars of dangerous goods is two (2) crew members.”

This interpretation was made following the fact that the Montreal Maine and Atlantic train had only one train operator on the night it ran away and exploded in Lac Megantic.

But now, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada has concluded that in the Lac Megantic accident that killed 47 people, at p. 118 of their report:

On the whole, it could not be concluded whether SPTO(single-person train operations ) contributed to the incorrect securement of the train or to the decision to leave the locomotive running at Nantes despite its abnormal condition.”

 

So, despite the overseer Transport Canada concluded that a single-person train operation is potentially deadly, the safety board could not conclude that it had any effect in the runaway train that demolished Lac Megantic. Such a non-conclusion makes me think that the TSB would be hard-pressed to conclude that gravity caused the incorrect securement. I am dumbfounded, and disappointed. Canada can do better.

 

 

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