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Lac-Mégantic train derailment disaster


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Increasing safety standards is dangerous!?!?!?!

What a freekin load.

Mandating greater supervision is dangerous?!?!?!?!

WWWTT

What standards do you want to increase, the ones found necessary by experts after expert investigation that will actually do some good or the ones you just pull out of your ass because you think they might stick Harper in the eye.

Whether the present government gets hung on this is of little interest to me, what happens with the rail system is because that is the system we will end up with, regardless of who forms government.

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The government is to blame for the accident, as proven by yet to be revealed information.

This is just getting silly.

Inspectors reduced, while hazardous oil tanker movement is up several thousand percent. Then one of the worst disasters in Canadian Railway history happens. Yes, it's circumstantial. Yes, it's possible that it has nothing to do with the cutbacks. At least it brings attention to it and raises some important questions. And it seems likely that the reduction in safety inspectors is at the very least a contributing factor.
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On "Power and Politics" the Tory rep. said they knew changes were needed but they hadn't had time to bring them forward. On the same day the new Minister said she was going to wait until the Transport Board came out with more information. Then, the next day, the PMO said that Tory rep. misspoke! It seems they are having problems with communications again. The Tories have had six transport ministers and hopeful this one can get things right, if Harper stays out of it.

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Inspectors reduced, while hazardous oil tanker movement is up several thousand percent. Then one of the worst disasters in Canadian Railway history happens. Yes, it's circumstantial. Yes, it's possible that it has nothing to do with the cutbacks. At least it brings attention to it and raises some important questions. And it seems likely that the reduction in safety inspectors is at the very least a contributing factor.

That would be my guess as well but I would rather wait for some informed recommendations than take a shot gun approach which may or may not accomplish anything.

Edited by Wilber
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The government approved of the type of flimsy rail cars allowed,the increased volume,the regulations,etc,etc,etc.

Are you saying that the rail company is independently self regulated?

Because that would be wildly ignorant!

WWWTT

I'm not sure if you understand about such regulations. You seem to be implying that if and whenever the government raises a standard of safety in a rail car, it is immediately implemented in every rail car that ever travels over a Canadian foot of track.

That is just flatly impossible! The number of rail cars is almost astronomical. Large numbers come from the USA and Mexico. Unless it is a matter of life and death there is not enough money in the entire continent to implement upgrades to every rail car in the system.

So what happens in the real world is improvements mandated by new standards are phased in, as cars retire or are completely overhauled, or new ones bought.

This is the only practical way to go about it. To demand immediate compliance would mean shutting down the entire North American railroad system, likely causing food shortages and bankruptcies of some shipping companies.

A car that has developed some failure can be pulled from the system but you can't implement new standards on ALL cars overnight! It would be like shutting down every car in North America to implement an improved safety systems. How would people get around while this is going on?

Even if you allowed the railroad companies to upgrade their railcars in batches, the process might take 20 years! There are just SO flippin' many of them!

Also, who said the existing cars are flimsy? Do you have something to substantiate your opinion? Do you have some personal experience with such matters you can share? I realize some folks might consider building a rail car to be an obsolete skill set but I thought I would ask.

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http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2013/07/23/lacmegantic_residents_allowed_brief_visit_home.html

The company has stopped paying for the cleanup of their own disaster.

I really hope to see lawsuits coming out of this. That is deplorable on the part of the train company. Blow it up then bankrupt it .....

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There's myriad examples of companies externalizing their costs to the taxpayers. We're constantly paying to clean up the garbage, pollution, and other damage caused to our communities by companies. The purpose of a company is to drive its costs down to zero. They blackmail the government by threatening to leave, then put the government on the hook to clean up their messes.

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No doubt the town sue them for the money, they are insured for it.

The law suits have allready started but I read somewhere that the company isn't worth that much and is strapped for cash. They may not get what they hope for and I'll bet the company declares bankruptcy eventually.

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No doubt the town sue them for the money, they are insured for it.

The law suits have allready started but I read somewhere that the company isn't worth that much and is strapped for cash. They may not get what they hope for and I'll bet the company declares bankruptcy eventually.

Probably but the same culprits will probably try and surface again under a different name.

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Here we go..... What happens if they close up, would the town get any money at all, or would the lawsuit in the U.S. take precedence.

http://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/financial-noose-tightens-around-u-s-firms-at-centre-of-quebec-rail-disaster-1.1389615

The financial noose tightened Monday around companies connected to the deadly Quebec derailment, with a hint that the Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway could close shop.

The Quebec government issued a lawyer's letter demanding that the railway involved in the Lac-Megantic crash and two petroleum-logistics companies foot the entire bill to clean up the environmental mess, the latest in a series of legal threats since the disaster.

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We'll have to wait for the official findings but this tragedy is shaping up to be caused by a "perfect storm" of elements. The US railway agency has already copied Canada's lead in providing emergency revisions to their regulations - an almost word-for-word adoption.

The new U.S. emergency measures for trains carrying hazardous material include not leaving vehicles unattended, locking the controlling locomotive cab, verifying with a dispatcher that the train is secured properly according to its weight and that the correct number of hand brakes are applied.

Link: http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2013/08/02/us_federal_railroad_administration_issues_safety_order_after_lacmegantic_disaster.html

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No more oil through Lac Megantic.

No more oil for MMA.

MMA will try to stay operational.

http://www.montrealgazette.com/touch/story.html?id=8750723

LAC-MÉGANTIC Rail traffic may begin running through Lac-Mégantic again this week, but the Montreal, Maine and Atlantic railway has decided it will stop hauling oil after one of its trains derailed and exploded here last month.

Its proven to be more trouble than its worth, and I guess thats putting this mildly, company chairman Ed Burkhardt said on Monday, a month after a runaway MMA train exploded downtown, killing 47 people and levelling much of the town.

We dont plan to continue with oil transportation. That traffic is going to go other ways, not over our lines, he said.

...

The company has not ruled out declaring bankruptcy, he said.Those possibilities havent gone away, Burkhardt said.

We havent added up, yet, where we think we stand. But we do intend to keep operating ... and we believe were bringing in enough cash to continue operating.

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I wonder if this effects the ability of the victims to undergo legal action against the people at fault.

There are 12 people from Lac M who have filed in Illinois, so they are added to the list....which is somewhere between 200 and 999 creditors long.

They may get some pennies ( a dime?) on the dollar but probably not much else.

Chap 11 is a re-organization so its possible they will become solvent and have to pay out, but dont bet on it.

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  • 1 month later...

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/what-s-in-rail-tankers-and-why-can-t-we-know-1.1871002

Raitt left the meeting without talking to reporters and refused to commit to any changes. A Transportation Safety Board report into the disaster is expected to make further recommendations.

Even as the ministers were gathered in Winnipeg, 17 Canadian National rail cars — some carrying flammable petroleum, ethanol and chemicals — came off the tracks near the village of Landis, west of Saskatoon.

That accident was an echo of two earlier this year in Calgary, where a frustrated Mayor Naheed Nenshi castigated rail companies and federal authorities for not allowing the city to know what is in rail cars, even as fire and emergency departments were trying to deal with the cleanup.

So not only are dangerous materials being transported by rail, chances are you can't know what those materials are.

Simple oversight or blatant corruption?

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  • 2 months later...

Well this idiot just doesn't quit whining ...

http://www.cbc.ca/m/news/#!/content/1.2477242

" They had every reason to be very upset with what had occurred," Burkhardt said about the anger directed toward him by the people of Lac-Mégantic."But what they didn't know was that I was equally upset and I was also a victim of this whole thing."

Investment wiped out

Burkhardt, who said he is the largest shareholder in the now-insolvent MMA, explained that he lost his entire investment after the crash forced the company to file for bankruptcy protection.

"That's a big pile of money, I might say," Burkhardt, the president of MMA parent company Rail World Inc., said

Equally upset ? ... big pile of money ?...

47 people died.

.

Edited by jacee
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Many dead and he is worried about his savings.

Let's look at a report the CBC did. This report was solely focused on CN (Canadian National) Rail.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/tsb-says-cn-rail-failed-to-report-hundreds-of-derailments-collisions-1.2451186

CN was trying to fight back saying that some derailments don't need to be reported.

Apparently since 2006 there have been 7 run away trains. Each one had the potential of what we saw in Lac Megantic.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/lac-m%C3%A9gantic-marks-canada-s-7th-runaway-train-since-2006-1.1327674

And we actually came close ... twice. I think both around Edmonton.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/cn-fuel-cars-derail-explode-west-of-edmonton-1.2126678

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  • 2 weeks later...

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/fire-burns-at-cn-derailment-of-crude-propane-near-plaster-rock-1.2488358

These derailments are out of control. We have had no less than 5 major train accidents in Canada alone.

This is what happens when you cut back so much that you have trains that are twice as long or more than they were 20 years ago and you have half as many engineers working on them. We need shorter trains with more frequent runs and a full complement of engineers on each run. We also need to reverse the decline in safety inspections and oversight that the Harper Conservatives brought in.

But I guess if your MO is to have pipelines built, why not make rail transportation as unsafe as possible to get support for your agenda.

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