Rail News – Transportation Safety Board of Canada Releases 2022 ‘Watch List’ For Rail Professionals
Rail News: Safety
The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) released its 2022 Watchlist this week which highlights the transportation safety issues the Board wants government regulators and industry stakeholders to address.
The watchlist highlights five rail-related issues: uncontrolled movements; follow the indications of the railway signals; fatigue; safety management and regulatory monitoring. The TSB chose these questions based on hundreds of investigations and data findings, board officials said in a news release.
Uncontrolled movements of railway equipment can create high-risk situations with catastrophic consequences, especially when transporting dangerous goods. Between 2010 and 2021, the number of uncontrolled movements did not show a downward trend, council officials said.
Train crews have also shown an inability to consistently recognize and follow train signals, which could lead to a collision or derailment. Between 1990 and 2021, the TSB has investigated 80 incidents that could have been avoided using a physical fail-safe mechanism, such as enhanced train control.
Companies in the transportation industry have also demonstrated ineffective management of worker fatigue and safety, particularly when it comes to handling hazardous materials by rail, TSB officials said. These issues present significant safety risks to the industry, as the potential degradation of human performance could lead to a derailment or collision.
Reducing the associated risks requires profound changes in attitudes and behaviors, both at the management and operational levels, TSB officials said.
In addition, the Watchlist calls on Transport Canada to better regulate industry compliance in a timely manner. The federal government has not taken sufficient steps to take appropriate corrective action in time to prevent potentially dangerous situations.
Previously unveiled every two years, the Watchlist will now be expanded to every three years to “ensure that more meaningful progress can be made in [the] industry and Transport Canada,” said Board Chair Kathy Fox.