More than a million litres spilled in St. Lazare derailment

March 1, 2019 4:16 pm

The Transportation Safety Board confirmed Friday that at least one million litres of oil was spilled during a train derailment at St. Lazare on Feb. 16.

The TSB said the train was travelling east at 79 km/h, when it experienced a “train-initiated emergency brake application,” which prompted 37 out of 110 railcars to go off the tracks near St. Lazare.

The fifth and sixth cars stayed upright and weren’t damaged, while the other 35 piled up over a distance of about 300 to 400 feet.

Around 16 cars broke open and spilled at least 1 million litres of oil onto a small area on top of deep ice and snow on a pond. The TSB said the spill was “mostly contained in a low-lying area adjacent to the track.”

There were no fires, no one was hurt and there were no evacuations.

The TSB has finished their on-site work, and said seven of damaged cars are going to be further examined further for a tank car performance evaluation.

Some parts of the track and wheels are being sent to an engineering lab in Ottawa for further analysis as well.

The train derailed and started spilling oil early in the morning of Feb. 16, the same day a massive Pro-Pipeline, Pro-Resource Rally was held at Moosomin with Andrew Scheer, Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe and New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs speaking in favor of new pipeline development and creating the conditions so that a project like Energy East could proceed.