Railway accidents up 7% in 2018, but fewer deaths: TSB report

17 main-track derailments and 62 on secondary tracks involving five or fewer cars

A train derailment is shown near Field, B.C., Monday, Feb. 4, 2019. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh)

The Transportation Safety Board of Canada says the number of railway accidents increased by seven per cent last year including those involving dangerous goods, but there were fewer fatalities.

There were 1,170 accidents, up from 1,091 in 2017 and above the five-year average of 1,035, according to a preliminary report released Wednesday.

READ MORE: Train that derailed and killed three near Field, B.C., ‘just started moving on its own’

Fatalities decreased to 57 from 76 a year earlier, but the number of serious injuries rose to 91 from 65 primarily due to events at crossings.

Accidents involving dangerous goods increased nine per cent to 125 from 115, with six resulting in the release of dangerous materials.

There were 17 main-track derailments and 62 on secondary tracks involving five or fewer cars, up from 10 and 54 respectively in 2017. The increased derailments came amid a 5.6-per-cent increase in gross ton miles traffic.

“All said, we believe that the statistics are encouraging in many important areas, thereby suggesting that the railroads are operating at a high level of safety,” analyst Walter Spracklin of RBC Capital Markets wrote in a research note.

The government report also said the number of aviation accidents decreased 16 per cent to 201 from 240. There was also an eight per cent dip in incidents, but the 860 reported was higher than the 797 five-year average.

The number of fatalities in airplanes, helicopters and ultralight aircraft was stable at 23. There were no deaths involving foreign-registered aircraft.

Marine transportation accidents increased slightly to 283 while total number of incidents were up six per cent to 936.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Convicted animal abuser to return to B.C. court May 21

Catherine Jessica Adams is facing a breach of probation charge

Concerns over democracy as Senate committee votes to nix oil tanker ban

Critics of the Senate’s recommendation to kill Bill C-48 say it goes against popular will

Open casting call issued for Trevor Mack’s first feature-length film

All Indigenous actors, preferably local Chilcotin people, are needed for Portraits From A Fire’s cast

New ferry to B.C.’s central coast sets sail, a year late and $20M over budget

Northern Sea Wolf will cost $76 million when it hits the waters in June

June rain will tell if BC is in for another hot wildfire season

Public safety minister says province’s crews are ready to go

Kelowna RCMP interrogation video brings home reality in ‘visceral way’: former TRC chairman

Video of Mountie interrogating young Indigenous woman disclosing sexual abuse under fire

Update: Mother dead, child in critical condition after carbon monoxide poisoning at Shuswap campground

The woman was found unresponsive insider her tent and the youth was taken via air ambulance to hospital

Canada’s parole officers say correctional system has reached breaking point

About half of Canada’s federal parole officers work inside penitentiaries and correctional institutions

Montreal researchers create audible hockey puck for visually impaired players

Three years ago, Gilles Ouellet came up with the idea for a puck that makes a continuous sound

Former B.C. Greyhound bus drivers head to Penticton for goodbye party

Big bash runs until Sunday, funded by drink cans left behind on busses over the years

Boy, 12, arrested after allegedly pulling a knife on another child at a Surrey park

The child was later released into his parents’ custody as Surrey RCMP continue their investigation

Full-scale search underway for missing kayaker on Okanagan Lake

Kelowna Paddle Centre member Zygmunt Janiewicz, 71, failed to return from his ‘daily kayak’ on the lake

ICBC urging drivers to slow down this May long weekend

Speed is number one cause of car crash fatalities: ICBC

Bucks hammer Raptors 125-103 to take 2-0 playoff series lead

Toronto heads home in a hole after second loss to Milwaukee

Most Read