Ottawa Ontario - The Honourable Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport, issued the following statement in response to the verdicts that were rendered in the provincial trial on the tragic derailment in Lake Megantic:
"Today, we take note of the jury's verdicts in the Lake Megantic trial.
Our sympathies are extended to the families and friends of the 47 people who lost their lives, and to the many others whose lives were forever changed by this tragic event.
The families, and the entire community of Lake Megantic continue to have our full support.
Rail safety remains my top priority, which is why my department has taken many steps to strengthen rail safety and continues this important work.
This accident reminds us of the importance of having effective legislation and a rigorous enforcement regime for our rail transportation system, including the transportation of dangerous goods in order to ensure the highest level of railway safety in Canada.
That is why I initiated a review of the Railway Safety Act last year in order to ensure that safety remains top of mind when operating our railways.
We have also proposed rail safety measures within Bill C-49, the Transportation Modernization Act, currently being studied by the Senate.
In addition, last November, I announced a first step towards addressing fatigue management in the rail industry.
We propose to move forward with changes based on the latest scientific evidence in order to best protect railway operators, travellers, and those living close to rail tracks.
Transport Canada (TC) will continue to closely monitor the safety of rail operations across Canada, and will not hesitate to take action in the event of non-compliance.
Our objective is clear, to take every possible step to ensure our railway transportation system is as safe as possible for Canadians."
OKthePK Joint Bar Editor: Bill C-49 appears to be stalled in the Senate possibly due to railroad management's desire to access locomotive in-cab video and voice recorders.