UPDATED: CP Rail investigated for parking train without hand brakes near Revelstoke

CP Rail is being investigated for allegedly leaving a train parked east of Revelstoke without its hand brakes applied, the CBC is reporting.

A train carrying numerous tanker cars passes through Revelstoke.

CP Rail is being investigated for allegedly leaving a train parked east of Revelstoke without proper brakes being applied.

According to the CBC, Transport Canada investigators raided CP Rail’s headquarters in Calgary in May as part of an investigation into the alleged failure to apply hand brakes on a train carrying dangerous goods, including oil.

The report is based on a search warrant filed in a Calgary court. CBC reporter Dave Seglins provided a copy of the warrant to the Review.

The warrant was filed by Robert Blair, an inspector with Transport Canada, in an Alberta court on May 14. In it, he seeks permission to obtain rail traffic recordings from CP Rail.

The warrant alleges that Canadian Pacific and superintendent Mark Jackson violated the Rail Safety Act by leaving 57 rail cars unattended without the hand brakes applied on Feb. 15, 2015.

The alleged incident happened as CP Rail engineers and conductors were about to go on strike. According to the warrant, Train 401 was on its way west to Revelstoke when the crew were told to stop at Greely, 10 kilometres east, and uphill, of Revelstoke. Because of the impending strike, the crew radioed in to say there wasn’t enough time to apply the handbrakes as required.

The call then came back to not apply the handbrakes. According to the warrant, the order came from Jackson himself. The conductor, who was interviewed by Transport Canada inspectors in April, complied with the order. She notified her union representative, who forwarded her e-mail to Transport Canada.

The train was later moved without incident.

Mayor Mark McKee said the report was a concern for the community, but he wanted to see where the investigation leads.

“I find it hard to believe they’re going to leave a train with the potential to run away into downtown Revelstoke,” he said. “I find it hard to believe someone would do that deliberately.”

Transport Canada spokesperson Sara Johnston confirmed the investigation was ongoing. She said the agency would not comment further on the alleged incident.

Martin Cej, the vice-president of public affairs for CP Rail, said the company was cooperating with Transport Canada.

“We’ll continue to cooperate but as this is an ongoing investigation, we have no further comment,” he said.

No charges have been laid. The allegations, if proven true, could result in a fine of up to $1 million, revocation of the Railway Operating Certificate, court orders and criminal prosecution.

The allegations raise the spectre of another Lac Megantic, when improperly applied hand brakes led to a runaway train exploding and destroying part of a Quebec community.

Just Posted

‘Art Alleries’ coming to Revelstoke with funding from the Columbia Basin Trust

Rob Buchanan’s creations will be hung on alleyway walls and lit

Animal rights activists to protest Kelowna’s RibFest launch

Animal rights activists plan on sinking their teeth into an annual event they say is unethical and unhealthy.

No end in sight, smoke is here to stay

There is no anticipated change in weather for the Okanagan-Shuswap this week

B.C. declares state of emergency as more than 560 wildfires rage

This is only the fourth state of emergency ever issued during a fire season

LUNA Q&A: Isabelle Kirouac

Meet the artists of LUNA Noctural Art & Wonder coming to Revelstoke Sept. 29

Interim GoFundMe payments approved in Humboldt Broncos crash

$50,000 to be given to each of the 13 survivors and each family of the 16 people who died

Altidore nets 3 as Toronto drubs Whitecaps 5-2

Vancouver falls 7-4 on aggregate in Canadian Championship final

Ottawa intervenes to get B.C. ball player, 13, to Little League World Series

Before immigration issue was resolved, Dio Gama was out practicing the game he loves Wednesday

Pet goldfish invades small B.C. lake

Pinecrest Lake is located between Whistler and Squamish

Mounties deployed to help B.C. communities affected by wildfires

RCMP officers heading to places particularly within central, northern and southern B.C.

Chinese medicine practitioner in B.C. facing historical sex assault charges

71-year old Kit Wong practiced acupuncture from his home during the time of the assaults

Quebec sets aside $900 million for companies hurt by U.S. tariffs

Premier Philippe Couillard says his government will make $863 million available over five years

Wildfires converge near Mabel Lake in Lumby

Area restrictions expanded in Lumby and Cherryville

Most Read