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Railway Crossing Safety: Challenges and Opportunities Wendy A. Tadros, Chair Transportation Safety Board of Canada Operation Lifesaver 20 th Annual Seminar.

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Presentation on theme: "Railway Crossing Safety: Challenges and Opportunities Wendy A. Tadros, Chair Transportation Safety Board of Canada Operation Lifesaver 20 th Annual Seminar."— Presentation transcript:

1 Railway Crossing Safety: Challenges and Opportunities Wendy A. Tadros, Chair Transportation Safety Board of Canada Operation Lifesaver 20 th Annual Seminar September 16, 2008 Aylmer, Quebec

2 2 Operation Lifesaver and the TSB Common Goals Improve railway safety Finding deficiencies in the system Raising public awareness of risks and what to do to mitigate them

3 3 Presentation Outline Overview of statistics Look at railway crossing accident investigations in progress Progress on recommendations from previous crossing and trespassing accidents

4 4 Ongoing Investigations Pincourt, Quebec, December 17, 2007 Collision with tractor trailer at crossing St-Arsène, Quebec, January 19, 2008 Collision with passenger minivan at crossing Mallorytown, Ontario, July 15, 2008 Collision with tractor trailer at crossing

5 5 Pincourt, Quebec

6 6 Pincourt, Quebec Questions Asked by the Board Is emergency contact information at crossings adequate? Should driver training manuals contain information on contacting railways in an emergency? Should roadway vehicle presence detectors be fitted at high-risk crossings? How should emergencies be broadcast?

7 7 St-Arsène, Quebec

8 8 St-Arsène, Quebec Issues Under Consideration Deficiencies found with warning systems at this crossing Transport Canada’s process to upgrade crossing warning systems

9 9 Mallorytown, Ontario

10 10 Kingston, Ontario, May 2002 TSB Lowboy Crossing Simulation

11 11 Mallorytown, Ontario Issues Under Consideration Construction standards for high-speed main line crossings Lowboy trailer design Driver awareness Emergency and roadway signage

12 12 Progress on Recommendations Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, May 1990 Pedestrian trespassing onto railway bridge Bowmanville, Ontario, November 1999 Collision with tractor-trailer at farm crossing Brockville, Ontario, February 2005 Fatal pedestrian collision at crossing

13 13 Carleton University May 24, 1990

14 14 Carleton University Recommendations Minimum standards for barriers to prevent trespassing Better regulation to enable law enforcement deterrent action against railway trespassing Action taken Contraventions Act allows for law enforcement to issue fines for trespassing

15 15 Carleton University Action Still Pending Access Control Regulations drafted by TC, but are not yet in force Regulatory Changes Moving at a Glacial Pace Measures to mitigate the risk not put in place Regulatory process too slow

16 16 Bowmanville, Ontario November 23, 1999

17 17 Bowmanville, Ontario Example of Farm Crossing

18 18 Bowmanville, Ontario Recommendations That TC enact regulations for higher farm/private crossing standards as soon as possible TC and CN close or improve private/farm crossings along the Kingston Subdivision Action taken Improvements were made to crossings and some crossings were closed

19 19 Bowmanville, Ontario Action Still Pending Regulations on horizontal alignment not yet in force New grade crossing regulations in drafting stage for 19 years Slow pace of regulatory change is a safety issue in and of itself

20 20 Brockville, Ontario February 17, 2005

21 21 Brockville, Ontario Classic second-train accident Pedestrians not as well-protected as vehicles Similar accident not far from this one in 1995 Many other communities with busy multi-track main lines

22 22 Brockville, Ontario Recommendations That TC assess and make public risks to pedestrians for second-train accidents at all multi-track crossings That TC work with railways and communities to develop solutions to prevent pedestrian/train accidents Action taken TC will improve high-risk pedestrian crossings as resources permit TC developed Pedestrian Safety at Crossing Guide to help educate Canadians of risks

23 23 Conclusion Railway crossing accidents involve many factors More work needs to be done: –Technological solutions –Further public education –Development and enactment of improved regulations Operation Lifesaver is an important avenue for education about risk prevention near railway crossings

24 24


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