Transport Canada’s “classified” Lac-Mégantic payment

In a curious role reversal, Canada’s former Minister of Transport, now opposition politician Lisa Raitt, has revealed that the Canadian government quietly paid C$75 million toward compensation for victims of the 2013 oil trains disaster that killed 47 in the Quebec resort town of Lac-Mégantic.

Lac Megantic

Transport Canada scrutinized for safety snafus

The reputation of Canada’s much-criticized rail regulator is being further pummeled, both by its elected master and by the union representing lineside safety inspectors.

TSB cites lax Transport Canada oversight in Lac-Mégantic disaster

Chronic laxity by Canada’s transportation regulator is identified by the country’s accident investigator as the primary underlying cause of the July 6, 2013 derailment and explosion at Lac-Mégantic, Quebec, of a Montreal, Maine & Atlantic train carrying 7.7 million liters of mislabeled crude oil from North Dakota’s Bakken shale formation to Irving Oil’s refinery at Saint John, N.B.

Canada TSB clears interim CBR reforms

Canada’s transportation accident investigators gave the country’s rail regulator, Transport Canada, a passing grade on interim emergency directives introduced in April to reduce the chances of crude oil train explosions such as that which devastated downtown Lac-Mégantic, Quebec, on July 6, 2013.

Transport Canada toughens CBR safety regs

Trains carrying 20 cars or more of crude oil or ethanol must not exceed 50 mph under a new directive issued by Transport Canada on Wednesday, April 23, 2014, and that limit may be lowered for some locations after specific risk assessments for particular urban populations and sensitive assets such as water sources.

NTSB, TSB issue joint CBR safety recommendations

The National Transportation Safety Board, in coordination with the Transportation Safety Board of Canada, on Jan. 23, 2014 issued a series of recommendations to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), both of which are part of the U.S. Department of Transportation, to address the safety risks of crude by rail (CBR). The recommendations are not unusual or groundbreaking; that NTSB and TSB have issued them jointly is indicative of increased cooperation among U.S. and Canadian regulatory bodies regarding CBR.

Questions cloud Lac-Mégantic crude oil test data

Why did it take so long to determine that Bakken crude is especially explosive, given that Canada’s Transportation Safety Board (TSB) six months ago analyzed samples drawn from the few tank cars that survived the July 6 explosion of a Montreal, Maine & Atlantic oil train at Lac-Mégantic, Quebec? An even bigger question is why the Canadian investigatory board continues to suppress the test data.