Order pursuant to section 32.01 of the Railway Safety Act

Section 32.01 of the Railway Safety Act (RSA) provides the Minister of Transport with the authority to order a company, road authority or municipality to stop any activity that might constitute a threat to safe railway operations or to follow the procedures or take the corrective measures specified in the order, including constructing, altering, operating or maintaining a railway work.

On August 24, 2019, a Central Maine and Quebec Railway Canada Inc. (CMQR) rail car derailed at mile 3.55 of the Sherbrooke Subdivision near Nantes, Quebec.

Prior to August 24, 2019 a review of inspection records by Rail Safety Inspectors, related to track inspections conducted on this subdivision by the CMQR, revealed a certain amount of deficiencies with the track structure.

Moreover, Transport Canada inspections held between April 29th and May 1st, 2019 on this subdivision revealed further defects.

Given the aforementioned, I find it necessary in the interest of safe railway operations to order, pursuant to section 32.01 of the RSA, CMQR to:

  1. For the defects currently protected by “Temporary Slow Orders” (TSO), and referred to at paragraph 5 below, notify Transport Canada once repair work has been completed and reviewed by a company Senior Track Supervisor, prior to the removal of the TSO, in order to allow Transport Canada to follow-up with an inspection.
  2. Increase the number of Ultrasonic Rail Inspections on the CMQR Sherbrooke Subdivision to three (3) times within the next twelve (12) months, as per the following timetable and submit the inspections results to Transport Canada for review:
    • Between September 1 and October 31
    • Between January 1 and February 28
    • Between May 1 and June 30
  3. Conduct an internal review of your certification and training program of track supervisors and track inspectors to ensure that they know and understand the requirement of the track safety rules, can detect deviations from the rules and prescribe appropriate remedial action to correct or safely compensate for those deviations and report your findings back to Transport Canada by no later than October 15, 2019.
  4. Provide Transport Canada by no later than October 15, 2019 with its capital infrastructure plan for the Sherbrooke Subdivision for 2019-2020 coupled with a detailed schedule indicating when the repairs will be made.
  5. Repair the defects (including mud spots and ballast conditions) that were identified at mileposts 3.55; 24.98; 59.08; 62.48; 65.95; 66.64; 68.10; 70.39; 91.00; 98.90; 109.00; 101.80 of the Sherbrooke Subdivision by no later than October 15th, 2019.

This Order is effective immediately and will remain in effect until it is cancelled in writing by the Minister of Transport.

Pursuant to subsection 32.1(1) of the RSA, a person to whom a notice that contains an order is sent under section 32.01 of the RSA may, on the date specified in the order, file a request for a review with the Transportation Appeal Tribunal of Canada (Tribunal).

If CMQR intends to request a review of this Order, a request must be filed in writing with the Tribunal, on or before October 6, 2019.

Pursuant to section 32.3 of the RSA an order issued under section 32.01 of the RSA shall not be stayed pending a review requested under section 32.1, an appeal under section 32.2 or a reconsideration by the Minister of Transport under subsection 32.1(5) or 32.2.(3) of the RSA.

Director General, Rail Safety