Aug 19, 2014
By Michael Kramer
Canadians heard today that there were many factors contributing to the horrific train derailment last summer in Lac Megantic, Quebec.
And one factor was the sloppy safety measures that existed – at the company that owned the runaway train.
Transportation Safety Board members were in the Quebec town today, releasing details of the report into the tragedy which killed 47 people.
The TSB report suggested The Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway had a weak culture of safety and didn’t have a functioning system to manage risks.
Transport Canada also came in for criticism for not auditing MMA often and thoroughly enough – to ensure the government agency was effectively managing the risks of the railway company’s operations.
Wendy Tadros, Chair of the TSB, says 18 factors played a part in the accident including the fact that about one-third of the tanker cars that ran off the rails had large breaches in them – which rapidly released vast quantities of highly volatile petroleum crude oil.
The train disaster destroyed a swath of the community’s downtown area and spewed acrid smoke and millions of litres of crude oil into the environment.