Derailment Blocks CN Line Near Hinton
Published: November 12, 2007
Source: By DANIEL MACISAAC, SUN MEDIA
A Canadian National train derailed in a
tunnel west of Hinton yesterday, blocking the main east-west rail line
linking Edmonton and Jasper.
CN spokesman Kelli Svendsen described the incident, which occurred
around 12:10 p.m., as minor, involving the derailment of a single empty
grain car in an eastbound train pulling 210 such cars.
"There were no injuries and no dangerous goods involved - and the car is
sitting upright just off the rails," she said. "It's a very minor
The incident follows the collision between two CN freight trains outside
Edson last month, the release of a Transportation Safety Board report on
the derailment and toxic spill into Lake Wabamun two years ago and
another minor derailment in the Jasper rail yard in September.
Ken Kuzminski, a Jasper carpenter and federal candidate for the NDP,
says he recently became so concerned about railway safety that he spoke
up about it.
"I'm working in a railway town, I talk to rail employees and I hear
their concerns," he said. "I'm calling on the government to look at
"We really need to give the Safety Board back the power of oversight it
lost when the Railway Safety Act was amended in 1999."
Public affairs officer Jim Feeny argues, however, that Kuzminski is
wrong and that CN's safety record is improving.
"We had a spike of incidents in 2005 and implemented a safety management
plan," he said. "As a result, we saw a 26% reduction of mainline
incidents in 2006 over 2005, and this year is just about in line with
the 2006 figures.
"So, allegations about our safety record are not backed up by the
statistics, which we report to the TSB."