January 13, 2014
Conservatives backtrack on rail safety
NDP urges Raitt to start putting the safety of Canadians first
New safety regulations announced by the Conservatives are a step back for rail safety according to Official Opposition New Democrats.
“Conservatives are now recklessly backtracking on emergency rules put in place last summer,” said NDP transport critic Olivia Chow (Trinity—Spadina). “They will allow trains with dangerous goods to be left unattended, are making no commitment to phase out the DOT-111 rail cars that contributed to the Lac-Mégantic tragedy and are failing to move forward on reviewing emergency braking systems.”
A recent Canadian Press report based on internal government documents showed that after being lobbied by train companies, Conservatives retreated on their newly announced policy of always having trains carrying dangerous goods be staffed.
“These regulations were put in place in response to the tragic events in Lac-Mégantic – yet Conservatives quietly backtracked and hoped people wouldn’t notice,” added Chow. “Keeping citizens safe is a core responsibility of any government. Canadians deserve better.”