Workers sweep away debris and install new track after a coal train derailed west of Houston on Feb. 21.

Safety board to report on derailment

Inspectors at the Transportation Safety Board are looking into what caused a coal train to derail west of Houston on Feb. 21.

Inspectors at the Transportation Safety Board say it could take up to a year before they can finish a full report into what caused 46 cars on a CN coal train to derail near Houston on Feb. 21.

“In this case, we don’t have anything that’s standing out to us immediately,” said inspector Peter Hickli, who been working at the derailment site about 25 km west of Houston. “We’re going to have to go through all the different aspects—mechanical, rail, operational.”

But a full report into the Feb. 21 derailment may not be needed.

Hickli said the TSB is already investigating two recent derailments in Vanderhoof that appear to have the same cause.

If it turns out that the Houston and Vanderhoof crashes are linked, Hickli said the board will combine them into a single report.

The coal train that derailed Feb. 21 was heading west to Prince Rupert along a 125-mile stretch of the CN railway known as the Telkwa sub. In the past five years, the Telkwa sub has seen two other derailments—both of them minor incidents that involved just one rail car each.

Hickli said he has already sent some rail taken from the crash scene to be analyzed at a metallurgical lab in Prince George. Engineers in such labs can look at bits of bent rail or broken trail wheels and find out if the equipment had any defects before the derailment happened.

A “black box” recorder on board the coal train will also be studied to get data on the train’s speed, direction and braking before the crash.

One other factor to consider in the investigation will be two small rail bridges that span Dockrill and Emmerson creeks. The bridges stand at either end of the area where the train derailed.

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Provincial COVID-19 data can now be used for B.C. to prepare for a second wave

In the past week, B.C. has seen a slight spike in daily test-positive case counts

Four air ambulance flights out of Terrace delayed or cancelled

Pandemic precautions caused nighttime closure of service station providing weather data to pilots

Skeena Resources, Tahltan prez excited by purchase of Eskay Creek

Skeena gets full control of mine, Barrick gets 12 per cent of Skeena and a one per cent royalty

VIA Rail lays off 1,000 unionized workers across the country

Northern B.C. route Jasper to Prince George to Prince Rupert is not affected by VIA Rail layoffs

Overall house sales drop in the northwest

COVID-19 pandemic slowed market activity

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

B.C. NDP changing WorkSafeBC regulations to respond to COVID-19

Employers say reclassifying coronavirus could be ‘ruinous’

Baby raccoon rescued from 10-foot deep drainage pipe on Vancouver Island

‘Its cries were loud, pitiful and heartbreaking,’ Saanich animal control officer says

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Windows broken, racist graffiti left on Okanagan home

Family says nothing like this has happened since they moved to Summerland in 1980s

B.C. man who went by ‘Doctor Ray Gaglardi’ charged with sex assault of teenage boys

The man, 75, is accused of assaulting teenage boys he met through Coquitlam-area churches

B.C.’s potential deficit $12.5 billion as spending spikes, taxes drop

Finance Minister Carole James gives COVID-19 outlook

Canadians torn on scaling back COVID-19 benefits to save money: poll

Of those surveyed, 78 per cent said they were worried about the size of the deficit

‘Trauma equals addiction’: Why some seek solace in illicit drugs

Part 2: Many pushed into addiction by ‘toxic stress,’ says White Rock psychologist

Most Read