Railway Investigation R16W0074

Uncontrolled rail car movement

The occurrence

On 27 March 2016, during Canadian Pacific (CP) switching operations, a tail-end covered hopper car separated from a train and rolled uncontrolled westward from CP’s Sutherland yard in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. The car travelled through the yard and over two public automated railway crossings (flashing lights and bells) before coming to rest on the main line of the Sutherland Subdivision. There were no injuries.

Map of the area

Investigator-in-charge

Photo of Glen Pilon

Glen Pilon has been with the TSB since 2008 as Technical Coordinator and investigator at the TSB Head Office in Gatineau, Quebec. He has been the investigator-in-charge of 4 rail accident investigations and has acted as train operations expert on many others. Mr. Pilon worked for the Ottawa Valley Railway (OVR) from 1996 until 2008 as locomotive engineer and safety officer and with the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) from 1987 until 1996 in operations as trainman and conductor.

Transportation Safety Board investigation process

There are 3 phases to a TSB investigation:

  1. Field phase: a team of investigators examines the occurrence site and wreckage, interviews witnesses and collects pertinent information.
  2. Examination and analysis phase: the TSB reviews pertinent records, tests components of the wreckage in the lab, determines the sequence of events and identifies safety deficiencies. When safety deficiencies are suspected or confirmed, the TSB advises the appropriate authority without waiting until publication of the final report.
  3. Report phase: a confidential draft report is approved by the Board and sent to persons and corporations who are directly concerned by the report. They then have the opportunity to dispute or correct information they believe to be incorrect. The Board considers all representations before approving the final report, which is subsequently released to the public.

For more information, see our Investigation process page.

The TSB is an independent agency that investigates marine, pipeline, railway and aviation transportation occurrences. Its sole aim is the advancement of transportation safety. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or determine civil or criminal liability.


Media

Deployment notices

2016-04-11

TSB launches an investigation into the uncontrolled movement of a railway car in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Read the deployment notice