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

Ponoka woman wills over $200,000 of life savings to community causes

Among the recipients was the Ponoka Health Foundation, the Wheelchair Van Society and STARS

UPDATE: Wetaskiwin hotel up in flames, high school closed due to smoke

Fire crews have been dealing with a fire at the historic Rose Country Inn

Reflections: The early construction of then Ponoka mental hospital

Looking at the early development of then provincial mental hospital in Ponoka

Wolf Creek Schools superintendent receives contract extension

Jayson Lovell will continue to serve as superintendent through 2024

Five highlights in the 2019 federal budget

Latest budget includes a sprinkling of money for voters across a wide spectrum

Facebook to overhaul ad targeting to prevent discrimination

The company is also paying about $5 million to cover plaintiffs’ legal fees and other costs

2019 BUDGET: As deficit grows, feds spend on job retraining, home incentives

Stronger economy last year delivered unexpected revenue bump of an extra $27.8 billion over six years

Newfoundland man caught after posting photo of himself drinking and driving

The 19-year-old took a photo of himself holding a beer bottle and cigarette while at the wheel

Here are five political leaders campaigning in Alberta’s spring election

Rachel Notley, Jason Kenney, Stephen Mandel, David Khan, and Derek Fildebrandt

UPDATE Leduc RCMP say sexual assault claim was false

UPDATE Leduc RCMP say investigation revealed sexual assault never took place

Fought to unite Alberta conservatives: Former MP Kenney ready to run for premier

Kenney, 50, was born in Oakville, Ont., raised in Saskatchewan, and spent his adult years in Alberta

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley wants chance to ‘finish that job’

Notley, 54, is the daughter of the late Grant Notley, who led the NDP from 1968 to 1984

PHOTOS: Massive fire at Wetaskiwin’s Rigger’s Hotel

Multiple fire departments involved, building badly damaged

Most Read