April 23rd, 2014

Raitt finally agrees to take DOT-111 cars off the tracks

After nearly a year of intense pressure from the official opposition, the NDP is relieved that the Minister of Transport has finally announced the removal of DOT-111 tank cars from service – the same cars that were at the centre of last July’s Lac-Mégantic tragedy.

“Successive Liberal and Conservative governments were aware of the danger involved in using these railway cars for more than a decade, but did nothing,” said NDP Transport critic Hoang Mai (Brossard – La Prairie). “Public safety needs to be a top priority for the government. It’s unreasonable that it took them so long to act on TSB recommendations.”

The NDP is very concerned and disappointed that today’s announcement of new railway safety measures did not include anything that would force railway companies to provide information to towns before dangerous materials are transported through their communities. Currently, this information is only available once the trains have already passed through, which does not allow municipalities time to prepare emergency response plans.