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

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

Just Posted

Two new fires burning in the Arrow Lakes Region

One of the fires is burning approximately 30 kilometres northwest of Castlegar

Drug alert issued in Grand Forks after fentanyl, ‘benzos’ detected in test

They are advising additional care and to have drugs tested before using

Ootischenia Fire Department members push boulder off Highway 3

The boulder blocking the highway weighed more than 400 pounds.

Municipal climate caucus, founded in Nelson, meets for national online conference

The group consists of 294 mayors, councillors and regional directors from across the country

Single-vehicle crash in Ootischenia sends driver to hospital

The crash occurred on Aug. 8 along Aaron Road

578 British Columbians currently infected with COVID-19

Seventy-eight new cases confirmed in past 24 hours

Conservation seizes fawn illegally kept captive in Vancouver Island home

A Comox Valley resident charged and fined under the Wildlife Act

Pandemic could be driving more parents to get on board with flu shot: study

University of B.C. study gauges willingness for parents to vaccinate children for influenza

Watchdog clears Okanagan RCMP in death of man after arrest over alleged stolen pizzas

The man died in hospital after having difficulty breathing and broken ribs

Have you seen Berleen? B.C. pig destined for sanctuary goes missing

Berleen was less than two weeks from travelling to Manitoba when she vanished

Health Canada says several kids hospitalized after eating edible pot products

People warned not to store cannabis products where children can find them

‘It’s not just about me’: McKenna cites need to protect politicians from threats

Police investigation was launched after someone yelled obscenities at a member of McKenna’s staff

Michigan plans dedicated road lanes for autonomous vehicles

First study of its kind in the U.S. to figure out whether existing lanes or shoulders could be used

Most Read