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British Columbia

We’d like to hear your story about how railway noise and vibration has affected you, and your community. Tell us about the problems you’ve had – or are continuing to have – with railway noise and vibration. How has it affected you and your quality of life? We’d like to hear about your successes and frustrations in resolving your concerns, as well as hear what current conditions are like in your area.

News Articles, Blogs, Stories and Comments from BC Residents … and Posts Relating to BC …

  1. Bolivar Heights:  Residents comment on the post Welcome to New Community Groups!  Visit their website at Bolivar Heights.
  2. Coquitlam:  Residents comment below.
  3. Golden:  Residents comment on the post Defective Rail Cars a Safety Concern for Communities regarding CP Rail.
  4. Kamloops:  Residents comment on the page Resources regarding CN Rail.
  5. New Westminster:  Visit the residents’ website: The Quayside Community Board.
  6. Squamish:  Residents are affected by excessive whistling.  Read the article.
  7. Vancouver:  Forestry industry complains of bad rail service in the post Forestry Industry Asks for Rail Service to be Regulated.
  8. North Vancouver:  New community blog called RANT: Residents Against Noisy Trains.
  9. New Westminister:  See the post Communities in the News.
  10. North Vancouver:  See the post Communities in the News.
  11. Port Coquitlam:  See the post Communities in the News.
  12. Port Moody:  See the post Communities in the News.
  13. White RockSee the post Communities in the News: The List Continues to Grow.
  14. North Vancouver:  See the post Communities in the News: The List Continues to Grow.
  15. New Westminister:  See the post Communities in the News: The List Continues to Grow.
  16. Prince George:  See the post Communities in the News: The List Continues to Grow.
  17. Squamish:  See the post Communities in the News: The List Continues to Grow.
  18. Golden:  See the post Cellphone and Marijuana Use Cited in CP Rail Crash.
  19. New Westminister:  See the post Federal Court of Appeal to Rule on Key Railway Noise and Vibration Issue.
  20. Golden:  See the post FAQ: Contacting Canada’s Two Largest Railways With Your Railway Noise and Vibration Problem.
  21. Golden:  See the post FAQ: Contacting Canada’s Two Largest Railways With Your Railway Noise and Vibration Problem.
  22. New Westminister:  See the post FAQ: Contacting Canada’s Two Largest Railways With Your Railway Noise and Vibration Problem.
  23. Golden:  See the post FAQ: Contacting Canada’s Two Largest Railways With Your Railway Noise and Vibration Problem.
  24. Pitt Meadows: See the post Communities in the News: Health and Environmental Concerns Raised. 
  25. North Vancouver: See the post Communities in the News: Health and Environmental Concerns Raised. 
  26. Prince George: See the post Communities in the News: Health and Environmental Concerns Raised. 
  27. Prince Rupert:  See the post Communities in the News: Health and Environmental Concerns Raised. 
  28. Prince George: See the website People’s Action Committee for Healthly Air (PACHA).
  29. Pitt Meadows: See the website Pitt Polder Preservation Society.
101 Comments
  1. Scott Ivany permalink

    I live in Coquitlam and have to deal with shunting, vibration, and locomotive idling 3-4 nights a week. We are on the CP line, and when I contacted them about the issue, they basically told me tough luck.
    I’m a pilot and we have strict noise abatement procedures that we must follow at airports, surely Transport Canada can impose some sort of procedure for the rail industry as well.

    • trainjane permalink

      We would recommend getting back in touch with CP Rail and letting them know that the “tough luck” option ran out for them on June 22, 2007.

      That is also the day when CP stopped being “Cannot Participate” and turned into “Cooperation Pending” when Parliament passed Amendments to The Canada Transportation Act, under clauses 95.1- 95.3, to address unreasonable railway noise and vibration levels, and obliged railways to take into account “the area where the construction or operation takes place” such as residential areas.

      A process was subsequently set into motion that returned jurisdiction to The Canadian Transportation Agency to oversee such complaints, and to render a Decision on the matter if a collaborative approach, including a formal mediation process, fails.

      Telling you “tough luck” would not be particularly collaborative, it seems.

      Perhaps you could get back in touch with your point of contact at CP and wish them a warm welcome back to accountability, after a 7 year hiatus.

      Competitor CN Rail’s strenuous objection and legal challenge of prior regulation saw provisions for railway noise and vibration overturned in 2000, leaving many affected communities across Canada wallowing in a noisy, regulatory void. Many experienced severely impacted living conditions. Without regulation, often people found their complaints to rail companies frequently disregarded, ignored or otherwise unresolved.

      In response, Parliament passed Amendments to reign in a problem that rail companies allowed to fester out of control. Railways could have quite possibly avoided this step being taken if they had chosen to self-regulate instead. They had a 7 year window in which to do this.

      They failed. Parliament stepped in, and now affected citizens have a process in place to address unreasonable noise and vibration from railway operations.

      Please review our “Resources” page for information about this process. Let CP know – in writing – what specific aspects of their operations you are finding unreasonable, and why. Be detailed. Have there been any changes in operations that have led to any of the problems you are experiencing? Include that information as well.

      Searching by location, is your area one that has been affected by the change in yard operations in that freight containers are no longer being used as a form of noise barrier? We have heard unconfirmed reports of this being a problem in around your general area, leading to increased noise levels.

      Are your neighbours experiencing the problems that you are? Consider having them sign on to the letter you provide to CP, possibly in the form of a petition. Give a copy to the City, and ask them to get involved. The guidelines put together by The Canadian Transportation Agency encourage their participation. Ask them to meet to discuss the problems with the rail company, along with constructive solutions.

      Keep a detailed log of the problems you believe to be unreasonable, along with notes as to what works well. Make sure CP knows what specific things it does that reduce the impact of its operations. Sometimes making relatively minor modifications in operations can significantly reduce noise and vibration disturbances, such as where idling engines are left, and ensuring that engines are not unnecessarily left running.

      If problems persist, consider requesting mediation from the Canadian Transportation Agency with CP. Local officials could participate in this process as well, so consider asking them.

      After exhausting all collaborative measures such as this, if problems persist, you could then consider returning to the Agency with your complaint for their consideration to render a formal public Decision on the matter, on the basis that you meet the required criteria to have them intervene.

      We wish you success in resolving this situation.

  2. Jen permalink

    Hello all,
    I am a VERY concerned mom. I have 2 children and one already has a heart condition. We live RIGHT on the train track. Well ok, just a few feet from the track, literally the track line backs up against my fence.
    I have been fighting with CP for 5 years now about their trains idling for HOURS at a time in my back yard where my kids play. CP doesn’t give a poop and will not stop polluting my family. I have fought and fought about this to CP and begged them stop somewhere else and to stop being negligent to the health and safety of the community they are polluting.
    I am so sad about this cause we just can’t afford to move and my kids are exposed to DIRECT diesel fumes for hours a day. As well the noise is so loud for them to be playing right beside an idling train all day.
    As CP has made it known they don’t care about the health of my family I want to sue but am unsure if I can or how. Does anyone have any advice for me?

    • trainjane permalink

      We are very sorry to hear that you and your family are being negatively affected by rail operations.

      You’re not alone in this problem, we get more complaints about idling locomotives than anything else, which is quite remarkable, considering the high cost of fuel, and “fuel conservation” policies.

      You might find it helpful to log these incidents, recording time, duration, location, and engine numbers, if visible from a location not on railway property.

      The reason we suggest this is that it may prove of assistance if you decide to contact The Canadian Transportation Agency to ask for their help in trying to resolve the issue from the standpoint of unreasonable noise and vibration from rail operations.

      Are any of your neighbours being affected by this? Was this situation the result of an operational change made by CP Rail, and when? Has the railway ever provided an explanation?

      Have you notified local city officials about your concerns, and asked if they could contact the railway on your behalf?

      Have you notified CP in writing yourself about your concerns? If so, what sort of feedback has the railway provided? Have they acknowledged your concerns?

      The key here, in our opinion, is to try (and track) all collaborative measures possible to show that you’ve done all possible to try to find a solution with the railway. Take a look on our resources page at the links we’ve provided to The Canadian Transportation Agency and the official dispute resolution process.

      We wish you well, stay in touch.

  3. SleeplessInSeaminster permalink

    I can’t stand the honking at night! I understand it’s industry standard to honk at intersections to warn motorists, but don’t we have all the infrastructure?? There are lights, both traffic and train, as well as a gate, at Begbie; similarly, the overpass.. I don’t understand why they’re honking. Godforbid it’s for communication and we’ve been putting up with irritating, cacophonous morse-code because they haven’t splurged on walkie-talkies

    I hope the pending litigation is successful, you have my undying/unsleeping support. If you need a guerrilla-esque honk-squad to sonically bombard the CEO of CP’s house at 3am with airhorns, just mosey on up to Agnes- we’ll be here.

    • trainjane permalink

      We presume you are referring to New Westminster, B.C., in an area of high-density residential housing, where, as we understand it, the majority of railway activity takes place after midnight.

      All in all, a thoroughly untenable situation, and a good example of why solutions have to be found to keep railways operating safely and less obtrusively for its residential neighbours.

      Your question is a good one, and one that more and more Canadians are asking, and need to continue asking. It’s time for answers and meaningful solutions.

  4. magic permalink

    Trains are creating a lot of noise pollution in the Coquitlam area. I would like to inform you about what happens in Europe where population and train traffic is a lot denser than here in the Canada.
    Trains in Europe don’t honk. Period.
    Drivers are assumed to respect the red lights, barriers and bell signals at the railroad crossings. Offenders are caught by cameras just as they are caught while not-respecting a red light at other traffic crossings.
    Penalties are severe and can even include drivers license suspension and jail time (just as for drunk driving).
    If I understand it well, some syupid rule forces the trains to honk always, several times at every railroad crossing in the Canada.
    Instead of solving the real problem (hunt and fine the offenders) this law is punishing everyone living miles around railroads.Please stop the noise pollution and help us to have a better sleep at night.

    • trainjane permalink

      Thank you for your comments, we completely agree with you. The rule you refer to, 14 l – can be found in the Canadian Railway Operating Rules.

      With the amount of rail activity now taking place late at night here in Canada, we believe it is imperative that a less-invasive signalling system be established at crossings in residential areas.

      The idea that that it is acceptable and necessary to routinely compromise the sleep of residents in order to operate a train safely is in dire need of an overhaul to a more integrated approach, one that focuses on the safety of the railways and its personnel, balanced by a healthy respect for neighbouring residential communities’ basic requirement for rest and sleep.

      The current system of blasting whistles in the middle of the night, often repeatedly disrupting the rest of weary residents, seems to make these folks a form of collateral damage in the course of rail operations. The effects of sleep deprivation are well-known; and it’s time to establish a less intrusive railway warning system that addresses this growing problem.

      In order to keep railway operations safe, residents too often feel that theirs is compromised by the inability to get sufficient rest inside their own homes.

      Railways strenuously deter trespassing on their property – and for a number of good reasons.

      And yet, the use of high-decibel piercing whistles waking people inside their own homes, thoroughly disrupting them…isn’t this, in fact, an auditory form of trespass?

      It’s time to rethink the current system…we think that there are better solutions that keep railways operating safely, residents functioning properly, and a healthier relationship between the two.

      Thank you for bringing up some excellent points.

  5. Gary Prokovich permalink

    These clowns are arrogant. If they want a war give it to them. Everybody should put up blockades and shut them down for as long as it takes. Or go to their houses and honk our car and truck horns all day while they are trying to sleep.If idiots are going to beat trains at crossings then it\s their problem just like someone jumping off a bridge.

  6. Irv permalink

    My sincere condolences go to the families of the three VIA train engineers who lost their lives in the recent Ontario train accident, and those passengers injured. As far as railway safety and noise issues are concerned, I believe it is important to see the commentary on the CBC report and TSB reports links below, and ask more questions? Are longer industrial trains going to reduce noise and vibration impacts, or the public, environmental impacts and safety concerns, when something happens?

    BC has alot of challenging mountainous terrain, and many communities through which these longer trains will pass through.
    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/2012/02/27/f-rail-safety.html

    http://www.tsb.gc.ca/eng/rapports-reports/rail/index.asp
    Cheers

  7. ReallyBCRail? permalink

    Its currently 1:10am on Friday, May 18 2012 and a train has had its horn on constantly for about the last 10 minutes. My wife and I moved into the neighbourhood around six months ago, and while we don’t hear the trains all the time, when the wind blows in the right direction we hear the train horns and feel the vibration from the trains – and we live at least a good 3-4km up the hill from where the trains are! … I actually feel sorry for people who live closer to the tracks than we do … wow, that horn is STILL going …

    • trainjane permalink

      You’ve raised a very good point, and one that we are hearing with increasing frequency. Noise pollution from rail operations, especially late night whistling – is becoming increasingly disruptive for residents who live a considerable distance from the railway…

  8. Magic permalink

    i think all of us should go to the city hall in coquitlam and new west to show our concern,people in Germany did the same thing and trains there dont honk or whistle in the residential area

    • trainjane permalink

      Don’t forget to also let your Member of Parliament know about this problem as well.
      Late night whistling by railways continues to be one of the key complaints we receive.
      It would be interesting to see a study on how this form of sleep disruption is affecting the lives and health of affected Canadians, and its potential ripple affect on the Canadian economy through lost productivity.

  9. Gary Prokovich permalink

    The police wre at my house Again yesterday June 22 2012 relating to a harassmentn complaint i tried to file with the New West’r police This action was taken by me as i have been in jail several times for mischiefb and threatening. I was told by the Judge if they were deliberatly making unnecessary noise to bother myself and the neighbours to make these complaints. But as usual the Railroads tell the cops baffle gab B.S. They constantlly blow whistles and ring bells at intersections when they are within a few hundred feet. How is this a safety law by rail. The CTA says warning devices to be used one quarter mile or 20 seconds from intersection. This is not the case. How the FFFFF do you plan on stopping when your sounding off within a couple of hundred feet This is how arrogant these jerks. SO WHERE IS THE Safety issue. Other than myself everyone that has the balls should get together and stand at City hall demanding action. Also people like to get some sleep before they go to work in the morning. That’s what apparentley happened in Germany and that put an end to certain hours of operation. Supposedly the railroads are supposed to beb 300 metres away in (wait for it) inCANADA. These clowns are not above the law. If this problem takes violence so be it. Thank you for any comments. The politicians should be firedn and thrown out/ they do not give crap about us unless we stand up for ourselves.

    • trainjane permalink

      Hello Mr. Prokovich, we repeat ourselves once again here to you that we completely reject the use of any form of aggression in this matter, but remain deeply concerned about the severity of the railway noise and air pollution problem in New Westminster, B.C. that continues to affect you, and many other residents in that locale. Yours is an example of what happens when the issue is pushed to a breaking point, and as such, should have, in our opinion, never been allowed to escalate into the situation it is now.

  10. Coquitlam Westwood Kingsway permalink

    Sure honking at night is for the safety of anyone that might be on the tracks at night, but come on! Repeatedly honking at 6 in the morning over and over and over seems as if the driver is playing some kind of practical joke on the residents in the Coquitlam Kingsway area. Once is fine, but unless there’s some form of threat then horning MULTIPLE times is completely unnecessary.

    New procedures should be implemented on how these trains cross intersections. There should be no honking going on unless a threat is posed. Trains should go really slow so if anything happens they can stop in a timely manner. But for now, I really feel bad for my neighbors that are elderly or have kids.

    • trainjane permalink

      The railway’s use of high-decibel whistles, particularly during the night in residential areas, continues to be a growing problem here in Canada.

      As railway traffic increases, so too does the intrusive disruption from whistles, affecting the ability for many citizens to get a good night’s rest inside the privacy of their own homes.

      The current process surrounding whistle cessation is extremely complex, and often prohibitively expensive for many affected communities.

      It’s our opinion that the human costs of this practice deserves serious consideration by both industry and various levels of government.

      With the growing number of people enduring sleep disruption or deprivation due to being woken regularly by train whistles, how is this affecting the productivity of these people? What does this loss of productivity cost our economy annually? What is the overall impact on human health, given our growing understanding of the negative affects of noise pollution? How many of these people head off to work after another night of interrupted rest and experience injury or accident as a result of not being sufficiently alert?

      We think it’s necessary to determine the answers to these questions, and we believe that those answers may well be truly shocking.

  11. Gary Prokovich permalink

    What do you mean by not letting my comments escalate? People need to be aware of the problems with the railroad. So what is the PROBLEM?

    • trainjane permalink

      Hello Mr. Prokovich,
      We agree that there is a need to air issues pertaining to railways and problems being faced in the community. That’s one of the reasons for this blog. Where we differ is in the area of escalation of words or action; our view is that escalation does little to remedy problems; often, it can worsen them. We can only hope that your situation improves as more and more people become aware of the circumstances being faced by the railway’s neighbouring residents.

  12. Gary Prokovich permalink

    I forgot to ask you if you have i think you have read other comments on rail and reason. I am not afraid to speak my opinion. Even if i lived in communist China or Russia. The problem and comments will not go away until there is a compromisen between the railroads and the people. I and we know they also have a job to do but without the unnecessary whistling and smashing and deliberate crashing. Thanks for any more input you may.

  13. Gary Prokovich permalink

    Your comment about my aggression , youn missed the point. If you blow your whistle like a jerk and ringing the bells at within a few hundred feet for a safety warning how do theyb plan on stopping the train in time? Their required by their law to blow 2 long 1 short 1long 1 quarter of mile or 20 seconds from the intersection. Your dealing with the PNE not working people.

  14. Jeff Willsie permalink

    Hi All
    You need your municpality to pass a no whistle bylaw.On Cp in London Ont, Guelph Ont & Chatham Ont there has been no whistle for over 40 years.

    Get the lobby effort into high gear!
    Jeff Willsie
    President
    OSR

    • trainjane permalink

      Thanks Mr. Willsie. With respect, it sounds like you are blowing your own whistle so that your locomotives don’t have to!

      Seriously though, it’s just not that easy in all cases, especially when the cost of flashing lights, bells, and gates are part of the equation; that can run into hundreds of thousands of dollars, a very significant expense for local government and taxpayers.

      How has the railway been able to pass so many costs off to the public to pay, when the benefit is mutual?

      Sounds like another area of rail operations that’s overdue for an update…a better formula for sharing costs!

  15. Farzana permalink

    Helo, I am new to B.C, Im at 72nd and King George in Newton, Surrey and the railroad crossing noise was just on for min 20 minutes :S Its 2:20am and the horns are so loud too-it seems uneccessary for them to be that loud. Is there anyone I can contact about this please? Is it really necessary to have all the noise,multiple times a night, when the trains are moving so slow thru a crossing anyway? Please let me know where to go to about this or if there is a group fighting this. I understand the railway was here first before apartments but there must be a way to reconcile the noise issue. Even earplugs arent helping me get a decent nights sleep and I otherwise LOVE the neighborhood because its not super busy. Its not like there is an issue with people walking alongside railroad tracks/crossroads at night who would typically miss the flashing lights. If the concern is deaf&blind people crossing tracks at night, maybe there could be a better solution for that. Thank you so much.

    • trainjane permalink

      Hello Farzana,

      We are hearing from more and more people who are getting extremely fed up with the late night use of train whistles.
      To try to get the whistles stopped, please refer to the resources section listed in this blog.

      You will need the cooperation of the City, the railway, and Transport Canada.

      How are your neighbours coping with this problem? Have you considered gathering signatures to support your application.
      Have you contacted the railway to let them know that you’d like to seek whistle cessation? How do they view the situation?

      Good luck with this situation, let us know how things go.

    • I also live in Newton. I am 7 months pregnant, not getting any sleep as it is. Last nighttime train horn Went for 20 mins at 140am and again At 610am…I am afraid that when I have newborn It will wake them up too, and I can’t take it much longer.

      To be honest I’ve never been stopped at that train crossing during the day… But every night there are upward of 5 or 6 trains?? Secret night deliveries?? Ghost train??

      Who do I talk to about this to get the ball rolling on initiating a quiet zone??
      I will rally the people, it seems to bother everyone…
      -Jessica

      • trainjane permalink

        Jessica, we’re sorry to hear about this. Our next blog post will cover part of what we have found out is occurring there.

        The issue of heavy rail traffic at night disturbing sleep remains a serious problem well beyond your community.

        In the meantime, you could contact the Canadian Transportation Agency and see if your specific concerns meets the formal criteria for a complaint.

        Best wishes to you and your little one.

  16. sleepless-in-new-west permalink

    This is absolutely crazy that SRY rail link gets away with this. We live in a brand new community about 50 meters from the track. When we bought our place, there were no trains blasting their horns while the presentation went on, the sales people said it wasn’t an issue and no one ever complained, so we bought. To be honest, at first it wasn’t bad at all, now my 2 year old constantly gets violently woken up in the middle of the night by some clown leaning on the horn. I would love to know how these residential zoning permits get approved with noise like that? What do we have to do to get some sleep around here? How is this possibly legal yet I bet I could get a ticket for driving down the street at 3am with my stereo on?

    I’ve written my MLP, I’ve written City hall, SRY, the mayor, all of them. Very little response. THOUSANDS of people live in my community which is rapidly expanding every day, yet the train traffic seems to be letting off in the daytime, and growing throughout the night, louder and louder. I don’t think it will be long before someone does something completely irrational.

    I would argue that sitting on the flight deck of an air craft carrier would present the same noise levels as a 50 car train shunting at 3am. NOONE sleeps through that!

    • trainjane permalink

      Would you be in a new community located on the Queensborough end of New Westminster, B.C.?

      We’ve heard of a new development in that area that we’ve been concerned about.

      Have you told your local real estate board, in writing, of the assurances that you were given at the time? We’ve heard more than one complaint in and around that area of the noise from trains – and whistling – being downplayed by trusting buyers.

      It’s extremely difficult for one to anticipate how disruptive whistling can be for residents until they’ve actually experienced it, in which case, you unfortunately now have.

      Have you considered going to your local media with the issue as to how this project went ahead, given that New Westminster seems to be a real hotspot in Canada for railway noise and whistling problems?

      Given the severity of problems in around the New Westminster, B.C. Quay area, why is the City approving further development without adequate setbacks, as laid in the Proximity Report that the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and the Railway Association of Canada jointly published in 2007? You can find a link on this site.

      Have you spoken to the railway and to Transport Canada about whistle cessation there? You would need to get their support, and get the City onboard as well.

      Let us know of any progress that you make, and any answers that you might consider sharing with others here.

      • gary prokovich permalink

        i have read somewhere that people i’m not sure of, north vancouver? said they were not going to pay anymore property taxes until the city did something about the unecessary all nite whistle blowing., things apparently are a lot better now. people that have to work would like to get some sleep. we should actually follow some of these engineers [CLOWNS] home and honk our horns all day. you may be aressted for making too much noise. HA HA

        • trainjane permalink

          We don’t know of the situation in North Vancouver, B.C. that you refer to, but we have heard that the Port and railway are set for an upcoming expansion there, so that will be an interesting one to follow.

    • gary prokovich permalink

      we have a lot of train noise complaints but nothing about quite often diesel smoke and breathing the fumes especially when you live in close proximity. we also get major carbon and diesel soot all over our houses almost every night from southern bc rail here in new west’r bc along river drive 24 seven. metro vancouver has passed a bylaw on the amount of emissions aloud but they do nothing except take a f’n pay check from taxpayers; while we continue our fight with the railroad involving excessive noise and pollution while we get no sleep and have to go to work the next day. also our children breathing these fumes .once again PROFITS before HEALTH. do you wonder why there is so much CANCER? read the cancer statistics and you see about diesel fumes causing tons of cancer.we have to keep on fighting but a lot more aggresivley and stop talking too much.

      • trainjane permalink

        You bring up an important point Mr. Prokovich – the unsightly soot from railways that settles around or even stains nearby homes.

        It’s a good visual yardstick as to the exposure that some residential areas are being subjected to. The idling is bad enough – why aren’t particulate filters in use to protect the environment and the public?

        It would be an interesting photographic assignment for someone to undertake and publicize…

    • StopTrainHornBlasting permalink

      trainjane, like sleepless-in-new-west, I too have written my MLP, contacted City hall, called in multiple complaints to SRY which *Note: What results did complaints get me? Increased prolonged horn blasting and bells AFTER ROAD CROSSING deliberately while passing of our residence of 24 years, LOOKING RIGHT AT US when we are in our driveway or looking right into our l/r window blasting away as they pass with a smirk …mmm!).

      Then there’s this! COLUMN: Imagining New Westminster without train whistles New West Record – May 22, 2014 (pertaining to my neighborhood): Back in Queensborough, other changes to level crossings will include installation of signal arms at each of the crossings along Ewen Avenue at Furness, Mercer and Stanley streets.
      See more… http://www.newwestrecord.ca/opinion/editorial/column-imagining-new-westminster-without-train-whistles-1.1921471

      And yet, still NO SIGNAL ARMS! And of course as I type, here come the HORN BLASTING bullies now. Lets face it, nothing is really being done about it, its all just a bunch of political ‘smoke n mirror’ BS…greed, pass the buck, lies and more lies!

      • trainjane permalink

        Sorry to hear of your ongoing problems. Your area is a particular hotspot for noise issues with railways. I understand that the City of New Westminster finally came to an agreement for whistle cessation for areas along the downtown corridor. Any improvements yet?

  17. Jeff Willsie permalink

    Hi Tranejane
    Where have you been? Did you finally smarten up & move? Did you get your municipal council to pass a whistle bylaw?
    It is so buisy here in Southern Ontario i had to buy more locomotives. I wish the government would build more nuclear power plants so electrifiation of the railways could begin.
    have a safe day.

    Jeff Willsie
    Pres
    OSR

    • trainjane permalink

      Dear Mr. Willsie,

      We’ve taken time away from the blog in order to pursue some other developments concerning the topics that this blog covers, as well as some outside interests. Thank you for your concern.

      As to your other comments about my “municipal council” asking if I’ve moved, need I remind you gently about the pitfalls contained in the word “assume…”

      Where I live has absolutely nothing to do with my commitment to the issues I write about. Whether I live adjacent to a railway, or miles away on an island without a rail line in sight, or somewhere in between, I’ll be continuing to follow social and environmental issues pertaining to railways, regardless of wherever I live now, or in the future.

      A move closer or further away will not affect my views on these issues.

      How are your locomotives that you bought working out? Are they equipped with Smart Start or a similar idle-reduction technology?
      Where are you leaving them when not in use?

      What is your company’s policy on idling, and does its have any public policy regarding the environment?

      Did you get that littering problem resolved on your land? Wasn’t some of that debris starting to get a bit too close to your tracks? We were concerned when we viewed the video:

      http://www.lfpress.com/2012/09/06/makeshift-junkyard-real-eyesore

  18. Jeff Willsie permalink

    The Locos need work but should be operating reasonably soon.
    They do have auto shut downs. My environment policy is to shut them down if not in use for 20 min or longer in temp 0 deg C or higher. In winter the working locos go in the heated shop when not in use.
    About the refuse i gave the MTO a couple of options & they have not responded. Transport Canada saw the issue 2 weeks ago & did not think it was of any concern. He said folks are using the railway as a dumping ground all across Canada.
    Jeff Willsie

    • trainjane permalink

      Mr. Willsie, if Ontario Southland Railway’s policy is to shut down locomotives if not in use for 20 minutes or longer, in temperatures of 0 C or higher, then OSR has one of the better locomotive shut down policies in place.

      Finally, we can agree on something!

      Also – you mention keeping your working locomotives in a heated shop. Why is this not done more often? Any insights?

  19. Jeff Willsie permalink

    Hi
    I think the federal crossing fund pays 85% for new protected crossings & the rest 50/50 with the road authority & the railway. I expect the feds did this as since the railways were built they are absolutely essential to a healthy economy in this country. If you do not like the whistle complain to the feds or have the municipality pass the bylaw.it is as simple as that.
    Jeff Willsie

    • trainjane permalink

      Thanks for the info, Mr. Willsie. However, it’s more complex than just passing a bylaw. An agreement between the railway, Transport Canada, and the City or Municipality is also required, and that’s where it can get complicated, and has, in some areas.

  20. Farzana permalink

    Can someone explain why the crossing alarm sounds for 40 minutes at a times sometimes (At King George and 72nd in Surrey)? Cars have no choice but to ignore the warning and every few mins we will hear yelling and car horns honking. Whats happening there? It drives people crazy, I want to know how I can fix this issue and Im new to B.C, someone please let me know if theres a class action lawsuit or other measures I can be part of. I wonder how that can be allowed in a residential area? Theres got to be a way to reconcile the noise issue.

    • trainjane permalink

      Hello Farzana,

      Do you mean that the signals are being activated at this crossing for extended periods when there isn’t a train, and cars are driving through?

      Or is the crossing occupied by a train that is stopped, activating the signals in the process?

      In both instances, contact your local branch of Transport Canada’s Rail Division and report it to them. They oversee railway safety issues. There will be a Vancouver or Pacific Region office in your area for this.

  21. Farzana permalink

    I just found this link…How do I find out if 72nd and King George in Newton,Surrey can be exempt from the train noises please? Im unfamilier with B.C still, someone please direct me to the local group,lobby group or how to address this in my area, its very important to me as I love my neighborhood, we got the noisy drug dealer out, if the train is quiet we can sleep and enjoy Newton more. Thank you to anyone who replies to this, I have no idea how to get things into motion politics-wise in B.C yet, I appreciate all help.

  22. Farzana permalink

    just found this link http://www.surrey.ca/bylawsandcouncillibrary/BYL_reg_17535.pdf …How do I find out if 72nd and King George in Newton,Surrey can be exempt from the train noises please? Im unfamilier with B.C still, someone please direct me to the local group,lobby group or how to address this in my area, its very important to me as I love my neighborhood, we got the noisy drug dealer out, if the train is quiet we can sleep and enjoy Newton more. Thank you to anyone who replies to this, I have no idea how to get things into motion politics-wise in B.C yet, I appreciate all help. Sorry for the duplicate post

    • trainjane permalink

      Hello Farzana, please check our “Resources” section for information concerning whistle cessation. You’ll need your City, Transport Canada, and the railway to come to an agreement together. This might take quite some time to have this set into place, if all parties agree.

  23. Jeff Willsie permalink

    The reason CN & CP do not have very many shops left to put the locos away is high property taxes. Cheaper to leave them running.
    Jeff Willsie

    • trainjane permalink

      If it’s cheaper to leave locomotives running incessantly, Mr. Willsie, it seems like the solution is to start raising the tax on locomotive fuel until wasting fuel, polluting the environment, and creating otherwise unnecessary noise, vibration, and fumes is no longer a financially attractive option.

  24. Hello from the wee village of Spences Bridge in the interior of BC where we have both a CN and a CP line – one on each side of the Thompson River. We encounter 50 + trains per day…..

    In an effort to “amp up” the impact of a complaint I sent to CP Rail yesterday, I added a link to my video documentation illustrating what i was complaining about and positively identifying the locomotive at the heart of the matter. I am awaiting their reply.

    You can see that documentation at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LGu8tfgPV0g

    I am curious if others have used video in their complaint process and to what extent they were successful.

    And thank you for the great resource you are making available here. Much appreciated!

    • trainjane permalink

      Hi Dwayne,

      You’ve put together a great video. It shows what would otherwise be impossible to explain to someone unfamiliar with the problem. We get the most complaints about noise, vibration, and fumes from idling locomotives, with whistling being a close second.

      We have heard of others submitting video as part of their complaint process; we think it is potentially an effective tool, as long as it doesn’t involve trespassing on railway property. Youtube is also increasingly becoming a mechanism to share these clips with others effectively.

      A couple of thoughts:

      What was the ambient temperature during this incident? This is an important factor as most railways have a “fuel conservation policy,” believe it or not! Ask CP about theirs, CN Rail’s policy revolves around a 5 Celsius mark whereby engines are to be generally shut off when not in use for extended periods.

      However, despite this, in the relatively nearby Vancouver area, CN Rail has been known to leave its locomotives running for periods of almost 2 full days in conditions above this temperature. It’s also not unusual for CN to leave its engines idling for up to 70% of the day in that same locale. You are definitely not alone in your concerns!

      Has CP given any reason as to why they want to use that specific location for idling? There’s one suburb in Vancouver that we’ve heard from where CP Rail idles its locomotives behind a children’s daycare facility…

      With the winter ahead, unfortunately the problem might well get even worse than what it is now unless you can get CP’s cooperation in moving the locomotives elsewhere.

      There is, however, a potential light at the end of the sooty tunnel. Ottawa is currently drafting regulations about locomotive emissions as part of the Railway Safety Act and there will be an opportunity for the public to provide input. We’re hoping that those living with the absurd waste and pollution around rail operations send Ottawa a clear message that the railways can do alot more to reduce their carbon footprint and be more respectful of the environment, and of neighbouring residents.

      It’s our opinion that far too much fuel is being wasted: we also hope that rail customers facing fuel surcharges take note.

      As soon as the draft regulations are released, we’ll be posting information about it on our blog.

      Review the Canadian Transportation Agency’s guidelines very carefully; it details what is required in making a complaint to them. If you have not done so already, involve your local elected officials and ask for their help as well in trying to resolve this issue with CP Rail first.

      Let us know of any updates in this situation, and best regards to you and the citizens of Spences Bridge.

      • On November 21, 2012 a landslide caused the derailment of 4 grain cars cars from a west bound CN train just east of Lytton. No one was injured. Service on the CN line has returned to normal but retrieval of the damaged cars is expected to take a couple of weeks at least. (see attached link for photos).

        The accident prompted Spences Bridge landowner, James Kohut, to post the following comments on The Rattler, a community website for the region:

        This train derailment further outlines the need for the CN and CP railway tracks to be removed from the Thompson and Fraser River Valleys. The Government of Canada and the railways are acting negligently by operating or permitting the operation of railways along these rivers where it is know the railways are susceptible to huge landslides, rock falls, and avalanches which cause train derailments. To avoid landslides the railway lines should be removed from the rivers and built in safer areas such as tunnels through the mountains where the trains will not be susceptible to derailing landslides or avalanches. This would better ensure that toxic materials traveling on trains do not end up in salmon bearing rivers in which many British Columbians, such as those in the tourism, sport fishing, and commercial fishing industries depend on for their economic livelihood.

        In the 1880’s when the Railway’s were established, the Canadian Government did not have the resources or technical expertise to build the railways in safer locations so that is why the rail tracks were built along BC rivers. Today the Canadian Government and the Railways have the resources and technology to tunnel the railways through the mountains in order to create long term economic and environmental operating efficiencies. Furthermore by removing the railways from the Thompson and Fraser Valleys, the economy of these valleys would be greatly improved since most people can’t stand the noise from the railways. The unhealthy high pitched squealing noises and thumping sounds from poorly maintained railway cars, along with other railway noises deter people from creating businesses in the valleys such as tourism or real estate developments. The railways, through a process of externalizing costs onto the public, are purposely harming the economy of the valleys and are harming people’s health by not maintaining their rail cars properly. Instead the railways let people be deprived of sleep with their poorly maintained railway cars. Depriving people of sleep is torture. Torture is illegal in Canadian and international law. This is grounds for a class action lawsuit against the railways which could very well bankrupt them. By removing the railways from the river valleys, the railways would be seen, from a public relations point of view, as being a friend of British Columbians and the environment rather than an being an unfriendly abuser of the environment and people. Also, by removing the railways from the valleys, many economic spin-off effects would occur with one being that the British Columbian and Federal Governments would obtain much higher tax revenues as the Fraser and Thompson Valleys could be developed to their maximum potential economically. Removing the railways from the rivers is a win win situation for all.

        If the railways cause an oil spill or other hazard materials spill into the Thompson or Fraser Rivers, British Columbians will be outraged for such corporate negligence when it is preventable. All industries, including the Alberta Oil Sands Industry, that want to transport hazardous goods by rail in BC should help invest in a new safer rail line to transport their goods to Asia. A rail line that does not follow the great rivers of British Columbia.

        • trainjane permalink

          Hi Dwayne,

          You’ve made some excellent points about the problems with current rail infrastructure, particularly on Canada’s west coast.

          One further note:

          It’s interesting that, internationally speaking, that sleep deprivation is a recognized form of torture when used on prisoners of various circumstances.

          However, when one industry engages in this on a mass scale, as is occurring here in Canada, the industry causing the problem on such a significant scale apparently considers it to be just part of routine business.

      • Last summer I sent a call out to our village asking for volunteers willing to be interviewed about their experience of living in a town with trains coming and going throughout the day and night. Subsequently, thirteen people volunteered to share their thoughts as requested.

        Using audio-visual equipment made available to the community by the Spences Bridge Community Club, I filmed, edited and produced an hour and a half video record of what these folks had to say. Also included are various encounters I myself have had with trains passing through Spences Bridge. (The video can now be seen on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oOiNMttD6Og)

        You are invited to attend the very first public showing of this video. It will be held at the Inn at Spences Bridge beginning at 7:30 PM on Friday November, 23, 2012. Admission is FREE with any donations going directly to the Inn for gracious use of the space. Refreshments and lite snacks provided by the Inn will be available for purchase at the event.

        Come hear what these willing storyteller have to share about their experience of living with trains in Spences Bridge (in order of recording and of appearance) :

        Hank Klynsoon
        Carolynne Terry
        Vern Chambers
        Roy Jackson
        James Kohut
        Teresa Wild
        Ken Matsumoto
        Joe Thomas
        Ross Figley
        Ray Nigalis
        Jean Burgess
        Pat Jackson
        Kalel Harrison

        DVD’s of the video will be available for a nominal fee.

        Once again, the video can now be seen on the Internet at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oOiNMttD6Og

        • trainjane permalink

          Hello Dwayne,
          Congratulations to the folks at Spences Bridge for coming together as a community and advancing this cause.
          We send you our best regards for the launching of yor video.

  25. Jeff Willsie permalink

    Hi All
    Bottom line is XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

    Jeff Willsie
    President
    Ontario Southland Railway

    • trainjane permalink

      Hello Mr. Willsie,

      We are, by no means, taking this lightly. We’ve edited most of your recent comment out because we think it’s reached a point whereby your combative stance that the “railway was there first” (not true in all circumstances,) that anyone currently experiencing hardship due to rail operations should just abandon their homes and move, and calling them “NIMBY’S,” while berating them for the dilemma that they find themselves in is already well-expressed by you on this blog.

      We’ve given you all the time and space that you’ve wanted, but, at this point, the repetitive nature of your opinion has just become a predictable taunt that riles and upsets the people looking for answers, help, but most of all, reason.

      So, we’re removing your soapbox and unplugging you, but happy to flip the switch back on and post any further constructive comments that you may wish to make.

      It has been made abundantly clear that we are fair-minded here and not afraid to represent opposing views. In fact, we’ve welcomed it.

      However, there comes a time where we have to say that enough is enough, and this is it.

      We welcome your views or comments that provide detail or insight from your perspective on the topics discussed here in the time ahead if you choose to do so.

      Best Regards,

      Train Jane

  26. On November 21, 2012 a landslide caused the derailment of 4 grain cars cars from a west bound CN train between Lytton and Spences Bridge in the BC interior. No one was injured. Service on the CN line has returned to normal but retrieval of the damaged cars is expected to take a couple of weeks at least.

    The accident prompted Spences Bridge landowner James Kohut to post the following comments on The Rattler, a community website for Spences Bridge and area:

    This train derailment further outlines the need for the CN and CP railway tracks to be removed from the Thompson and Fraser River Valleys. The Government of Canada and the railways are acting negligently by operating or permitting the operation of railways along these rivers where it is know the railways are susceptible to huge landslides, rock falls, and avalanches which cause train derailments.

    To avoid landslides the railway lines should be removed from the rivers and built in safer areas such as tunnels through the mountains where the trains will not be susceptible to derailing landslides or avalanches. This would better ensure that toxic materials traveling on trains do not end up in salmon bearing rivers in which many British Columbians, such as those in the tourism, sport fishing, and commercial fishing industries depend on for their economic livelihood.

    In the 1880’s when the Railway’s were established, the Canadian Government did not have the resources or technical expertise to build the railways in safer locations so that is why the rail tracks were built along BC rivers. Today the Canadian Government and the Railways have the resources and technology to tunnel the railways through the mountains in order to create long term economic and environmental operating efficiencies.

    Furthermore by removing the railways from the Thompson and Fraser Valleys, the economy of these valleys would be greatly improved since most people can’t stand the noise from the railways. The unhealthy high pitched squealing noises and thumping sounds from poorly maintained railway cars, along with other railway noises deter people from creating businesses in the valleys such as tourism or real estate developments.

    The railways, through a process of externalizing costs onto the public, are purposely harming the economy of the valleys and are harming people’s health by not maintaining their rail cars properly. Instead the railways let people be deprived of sleep with their poorly maintained railway cars. Depriving people of sleep is torture. Torture is illegal in Canadian and international law. This is grounds for a class action lawsuit against the railways which could very well bankrupt them.

    By removing the railways from the river valleys, the railways would be seen, from a public relations point of view, as being a friend of British Columbians and the environment rather than an being an unfriendly abuser of the environment and people. Also, by removing the railways from the valleys, many economic spin-off effects would occur with one being that the British Columbian and Federal Governments would obtain much higher tax revenues as the Fraser and Thompson Valleys could be developed to their maximum potential economically. Removing the railways from the rivers is a win win situation for all.

    If the railways cause an oil spill or other hazard materials spill into the Thompson or Fraser Rivers, British Columbians will be outraged for such corporate negligence when it is preventable. All industries, including the Alberta Oil Sands Industry, that want to transport hazardous goods by rail in BC should help invest in a new safer rail line to transport their goods to Asia. A rail line that does not follow the great rivers of British Columbia.

    • trainjane permalink

      We’d like to add that the impact from a spike in rail traffic should not be offloaded solely onto residents and their communities to absorb to accommodate the railways.

      Better infrastructure is urgently needed already before even contemplating further increases.

  27. Dwayne permalink

    On November 21, 2012 a landslide caused the derailment of 5 grain cars cars from a west bound CP train just east of Lytton, BC.

    My video foot age of the accident scene can be seen on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCS53Rc_4cc

  28. CN Rail seems to think that leaving their engines idling within the village limits of Spences Bridge is just fine, contrary to the feelings of many villagers who want such practices stopped.

    Video footage now online documents a typical idling situation wherein a locomotive, which could seemingly be easily parked further up the line for such an extended duration as this, is left idling for hours and hours right in the heart of the village. Excessive vibration and diminished air quality are the result, both of which reduce the quality of life of the local citizens who are calling for CN to ameliorate the situation.

    View video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h9yDHJZ-15o

    Complaints about such adverse corporate behavior have been forwarded to CN by email: contact@cn.ca

    • trainjane permalink

      Thanks Dwayne, for a well-prepared video on a very important issue. Locomotive idling and emissions are one of the primary concerns that we hear about on this blog.

  29. come down to my neighbourhood and take pictures of worn out train engines belching smoke and vibrating the houses so bad we have cracks in the walls outside and a bit of ceiling and wall separation. there have been meetings with rail Co’s to help get a long. they say they will then lie about helping keeping the throttle back to cause less vibration and you cannot believe the engine noise. we spent thousands of dollars on double glazed windows a few years ago but the noise is so bad you have to stop talking until the idiots go by. metro passed a emissions bylaw to regulate off road diesel equipment but they do nothing when you ask for help. they get paid for what? wasting taxpayers money, people like to get some sleep before they go to work. the biggest problem nobody else has the balls to get together to actually put up a barricade on the tracks so they lose money and give a little respect and they would get it return

  30. dwaynerourke permalink

    Extended locomotive idling continues to be an issue here in Spences Bridge.

    With the dramatic and far reaching rise of the grass roots Idle No More movement, however,
    perhaps citizen empowerment can yet bring about some improvement in this long standing issue.

    With this possibility in mind, I’ve created an image to help the effort along. Please feel free to use it and share it widely.

    Access image here:

    http://www.therattler.ca/show408h0s/Idle_No_More_Spences_Bridge_Style

  31. what’s complicated? it’s only if you make it complicated, you should be a politician, that’s why nothing ever gets done, every body seems to be afraid to resolve a serious problem especially with diesel smoke so bad from some of BC Southern rail’s engines you can’t stay outside your house, neighbour’s kids screaming and crying to go back into their house. it seems even though metro vancouver passed a bylaw in 2012 regulating excessive diesel emissions and black fall out over the houses and cars they don’t seem to do anything, collect a pay cheque. we are constantly washing our cars and houses.. march 11- 2013 5:15 pm train going past neighbourhood full throttle worn out engines vibrating the the whole block, the smoke so bad it’s coming thru any little crack of door way or window. i don’t like to bother these people they have a job to do, but at people’s health, i have talked to the pres. frank butzelaar, he said it’s not necessary to go full throttle in the residential area. but the clowns continue, if our cars made that kind of smoke and noise it would towed to the scrap yard. i guess it’s HEALTH before PROFITS. any feed back welcomed

    • trainjane permalink

      Particulate mattter from diesel emissions can impact human health. That’s not long complicated, it’s a fact recognized by The World Health Organization.

      What is complicated is the jurisdictional issues surrounding the enforcement of Metro Vancouver’s diesel emissions bylaw on an obstinate rail industry. In my opinion, that’s where the real problem is.

      According to media reports, initially the Metro Vancouver diesel emissions bylaw was intended to include diesel emissions from locomotives. However, as I recall, The Railway Association of Canada has since questioned the jurisdiction of Metro Vancouver to enforce the new bylaw upon its members.

      Now, the federal government has picked up the task of regulating the railway’s diesel emissions. A draft of these new regulations is currently pending.

      Metro Vancouver has gone to considerable time and effort to address the problem of railway emissions across the region, and taken, in my opinion, a leadership role in proactively pursuing air quality issues around an industry, by the Railway Association of Canada’s own estimates, can idle its diesel locomotives up to 50% of the time.

      The RAC could have taken the high road on this, and offered a form of voluntary cooperation on behalf of its member companies, which I believe include the key rail operators in your community, but chose otherwise…

      Need I say more…

      • this is about metro vancouver and their so called bylaw offroad diesel emissions being regulated, they have been to my house about bc southern rail in new west’r belching smoke passing through the neighbour hood full throttle shaking vibrating brutal smoke whistles and bells all night long from a few idiots, i live on river drive 120 feet from the tracks on a dead end street, nobody around here between 5:00 pm and 7:00 am except the rail crew driving back and forth doing excessive speeding through the neighbourhood, we have kids and pets down here, pets have been run over. call the cops to monitor the area once in awhile so they can at least give a ticket for running the stop signs at 40 to 70 kilometers an hour. during the day when there is traffic you hardly hear whistles and bells, plus they like to call the cops when i take pictures and stare at them, they say i’m threatening them or the cops won’t come because they know i’m not doing anything wrong. i was told by then JUDGE to do this. also massive diesel fallout thru the neighbourhood on the houses and cars. i have contacted every source possible and all they say contact so and so. amazing the persons paid to address these problems do nothing. there should be some kind of revolt but of course nobody will. the railroads have a job to do but not destroying everyone’s quality of life. only money is their concern. fed up with politicians and crap, fire them all orb blockade every rail line until there is some kind of courtesy

        • trainjane permalink

          My understanding in your area is that there is potentially a jurisdictional issue with Metro-Vancouver’s diesel emissions bylaw and how it applies to the railways.

          I can state from firsthand knowledge that Metro Vancouver’s Air Quality department have gone to extensive lengths to examine the problem of diesel railway emissions in their local area.

          At the same time, the Federal Government has been working on updating regulations for rail emissions across Canada.

          It’s taking much longer than what I expected, at least, to see what the the Feds come up with; as your letter shows, it’s an issue that desperately needs to be addressed.

  32. Hi Train Jane

    We are planing to purchase property on Hyland Road in surrey. There is railway track front of property. It’s same track which is 72nd and King George. Have you come across any discussion here on this particular train route? I am trying to get as much info before getting into final phase.

    please advice. I highly appreciate your help.

    Regards
    shaggy

    • trainjane permalink

      Hi Shaggy,

      Sorry for the delay in responding. I have taken time off to travel, and to look into issues involving rail transportation in distant locales.

      As for the property in question, you state that the railway operates at the front of the property of interest to you. I’m not certain what actual distance that would indicate, but hopefully you’ve considered talking to both neighbours close by, as well as the railway to get an indication as to what could be realistically expected at present.

      If possible, spend an entire day or so there to see firsthand what can be expected in terms of noise and vibration from current rail operations.

      However, most of all, please note a common theme when it comes to such situations, as we’ve been repeatedly told, and that is, that the situation with the railways can change overnight, and without any notice to residents directly affected.

      This is an unsettling prospect, and one that has carried devastating consequences for many resident stakeholders living in proximity to rail operations.

  33. Farzana permalink

    Here are the direct email addresses for Mayor Diane Watts of Surrey- mayor@surrey.ca and Amer Afridi,M.Sc.,P.Eng, Traffic Signals Team Leader- AAAfridi@surrey.ca I urge you to email them, they are very responsive and said they are forwarding my letter to the appropriate department. The best part of Amers letter to me “The letter has already been sent to Southern Railways that City would like to initiate the process of whistle cessation along their tracks in Newton area.” PLEASE also write to them on behalf of the hundreds of Newton residents (low income) who cant afford to move and who need to sleep through the night and not hear the alarm for half and hour+ ,and well as somone leaning on the horn full blast for 20 seconds at 4am (and lots of aother times. I understand theres alot of red tape and delays with getting this resolved, please let me know what else we can do to help Newton be peaceful,expecially at night. Is there a place on this forum for contact infos so we can help each other out?

    Thank you so much

  34. Farzana permalink

    I just got off the phone with Southern Railway of British Columbia. They have an emergency # 604 521-4821 ,call this # and report alarm signal and horn issues as they are happening. The fella was nice but would not provide any email addresses. So we in Newton/Surrey can call and log our address every time theres an issue. He also said that he’ll talk with conductors about the horn issue, although he told me them leaning on the horn for 20 seconds is short :S Lets not give up on this issue! They are aware of faulty signals but we need them to act more on this issue so we can sleep through the night again.

  35. dwaynerourke permalink

    Hi everyone,

    It has been a very hot summer here along British Columbia’s majestic Thompson River. In such an arid and hot climate as we have here, the risk of fire is ever-present. In recent weeks there have been four fires within 15 km of my home here in Spences Bridge and all have occurred directly adjacent to the railway tracks on both sides of the Thompson. For this reason, and with the assistance of our local Improvement District Trustee Carolynne Terry, I have initiated a public meeting to collectively explore ways and means of reducing future fire hazards in the area. This will be an open public meeting to which all stakeholders are invited, including both railways. We would like to see you there as well and it is for this reason that I am extending this invitation to you.

    The meeting will take place at the Spences Bridge Community Center at 3641 Hwy.8 on Tuesday, Sept.9, 2013 from 7 to 9 PM.

    Please advise if you are able to attend or to send a representative to what we consider to be a very important public gathering. Thank you.

    Yours sincerely,

    Dwayne Edward Rourke

    Poster links:

    For documentation of the fires that have raged through our region, please go to The Rattler http://www.therattler.ca

    • trainjane permalink

      Hello Dwayne,

      Thanks for providing the update. Looks like rail safety is back on Ottawa’s radar again as well…

  36. Hi trainjane,

    I would like to insert a correction to my recent posting regarding our upcoming meeting to collectively explore ways and means of reducing fire hazards along railways, especially in our own locale. The meeting is on Sept. 3, not Sept.9 as indicated above.

    At the moment, we have confirmed attendance by reps of both CN and CP railways. We have also garnered a commitment by Senator Nancy Greene-Raine to be in attendance as well. Senator Raine has brought an important government document to our attention titled “Rules for the Control and Prevention of Fires on Railway Rights-of-Way”. The document is available for download at http://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/railsafety/rules-tce06-359.htm

    I am curious to know if you or others have found this document helpful in dealing with railways and fires. From what I can ascertain locally, there is a disconnect between the rules and the corporate behaviour they attempt to manage. What is your take?

    • trainjane permalink

      Hello Mr. Rourke,

      Thank you for the update, and the correction. Your meeting date is coming up very soon indeed.

      First of all, it is very encouraging to hear that both CN and CP Rail have agreed to attend your community’s meeting regarding the reduction of fire hazards along rail lines there.

      I had not yet seen the “Rules for the Control and Prevention of Fires on Railway Rights-of-Way” until now.

      My first concern is that these Rules date back to July 25, 1995.

      The Transport Canada site that displays the Rules was last updated in 2009.

      With so much change in the rail industry over the past 20 years, would it not be time for an overall review at the Federal level? A further question I have is why these Rules have not been amalgamated as a set of provisions into The Railway Safety Act?

      How do the given Rules vs. the Regulations in the RSA work, in regards to each other? That’s a significant question, in my mind. I do not know the answer to this; perhaps it’s one to ask your attending Senator to seek clarification thereof.

      You may want to review the current Railway Safety Act for yourself first, in this regard. I did not realize that fire provisions were not directly addressed in the manner that many other aspects of hazards and rail safety are therein.

      I believe the Railway Safety Act is reviewed at certain intervals of time, and the public is given opportunity to participate in the formal review process. This might be a good aspect of rail safety to bring forward at that time, in the course of the review.

      A further comment that I have in favour of updating Rules and Regulations is to recognize the regional component in addressing fire hazards. Tinder dry conditions in your locale will present more of a challenge in terms of overall fire hazards than the more wet, rainy, coastal areas in B.C.

      In other words, different levels of care and vigilance may be required in drier areas such as your community, as compared to others only hours away.

      As for your question to me about the disconnect about Rules and “corporate behaviour,” that’s why I’m suggesting that it is overdue for some of those Rules to become Regulations…

  37. Hi trainjane,

    Here is a summary of our fire prevention meeting here in Spences Bridge. Perhaps what transpired her ewill be of some use to people in other parts of the country who are also dealing with this and related issues.

    First of all, both CN and CP bailed at the last moment citing stellar performance on their part and the lack of a clear meeting agenda on our part. Personally, I consider both assertions to be false. The fact that we have had at least four train-sparked fires in our area this summer reveals the falsity of their performance records. The meeting was billed as a brainstorming session with all stakeholders and was conducted accordingly. Both railways were alerted to this format and also that neither was expected to give any kind of presentation. It was simply an opportunity for stakeholders to be in face-to-face conversation whilst collectively establishing ideas for better train-related fire prevention in our area.

    Following is a list of suggestions established by those in attendance. (This included a senator, a mayor, 2 First Nations chiefs, a Transport Canada inspector, a full contingent of firefighters from as far away as Kamloops and several locals, including our local Improvement District trustee.

    Ideas suggested and explored:

    * Slow trains down for less friction, and lessen possibility of collisions and derailments.

    *Restrict grinding operations during fire season, notify residents online, or otherwise, as to grinding schedule so steps towards fire protection can be implemented by rural land-owners. 

    *Install more “hot boxes” in the drier areas for quicker fire detection.

    *Carry more cabooses with spotters and available technology for spotting trouble during high fire hazard season.

    *Carry water tanks and sprayers on the end of trains to extinguish any sparks as the train passes. Spray water during fire season, all trains.

    *Create specific plans with local and regional fire services to clear debris off tracks in the spring through controlled burning. Herbicides only kill the plants and create more debris, as well as create dangers to wildlife and humans. Burning is a tried and true method of clearing detritus, and traditional activity for First Nations.

    *Educate and facilitate people on how to keep their properties “fire smart”, and find help for those who are incapable of this work (seniors, handicapped, etc.). Funding helpers who clean up hazardous debris: people operating weed-wackers, chain saws, trailers for removal, for example. 

    *Step up education on “who you gonna call?”. Everyone should have the number readily available for reporting fires, and know what information (location, size of fire, possible source, etc.) to relay to the fire services.
     
    *Insure that every locality– municipal, first nations, and private– has a mandatory fire prevention plan, and it is carried out consistently. It only works if everyone does it. These plans should be made available to anyone available online and/or in print.

    Conclusion:

    We will try our utmost to get these ideas into the hands of those who can legislate and enforce them. We are putting our trust into the hands of our elected representatives, but when this fails, the people must be heard. Railways are corporations, and they will need regulations to follow, and penalties must in place for negligence. We need specific rules for specific places at specific times. Vague wording in legislation just wastes time and money on lawsuits, a game only corporations can afford to play. We must have positive improvements in prevention before next year’s fire season if we are to see a reduction in railway sparked fires. Fire prevention must come first, as our firefighters can only do so much to keep us out of harm’s way; the onus is on the railways to minimize the dangers their economic activity generates. We urge the reviewers of the Railway Safety Act to update and upgrade, knowing Canadians are not feeling safe within the bounds of  the current legislation. 

    _________________________________________________________________

    Links to online resources directly related to this meeting:

    1) CBC 

    Audio file:  Spences Bridge residents get proactive on train fires

    2)  Kamloops Daily News: articles and comments
    Spences Bridge organizers frustrated by snub from railways

    Chain of fires blamed on railcar 

    Train that sparked wildfires a worry for Spences Bridge 

    YouTube Videos related to this meeting:

    Train Speed Issues in Spences Bridge, BC. 

    ‪WATER ISSUES IN SPENCES BRIDGE BC: Sept. 2, 2013‬

     PRECISION WATER BOMBING: Spences Bridge, BC. August 12, 2013.   

    ‪Railway-sparked Fires a Danger to Canadian Communities   ‬
    ‪‬

            Trainspotting – Spences Bridge, BC: THE GRIND   

  38. Hi trainjane,

    Here is a summary of our fire prevention meeting here in Spences Bridge. Perhaps what transpired her ewill be of some use to people in other parts of the country who are also dealing with this and related issues.

    First of all, both CN and CP bailed at the last moment citing stellar performance on their part and the lack of a clear meeting agenda on our part. Personally, I consider both assertions to be false. The fact that we have had at least four train-sparked fires in our area this summer reveals the falsity of their performance records. The meeting was billed as a brainstorming session with all stakeholders and was conducted accordingly. Both railways were alerted to this format and also that neither was expected to give any kind of presentation. It was simply an opportunity for stakeholders to be in face-to-face conversation whilst collectively establishing ideas for better train-related fire prevention in our area.

    Following is a list of suggestions established by those in attendance. (This included a senator, a mayor, 2 First Nations chiefs, a Transport Canada inspector, a full contingent of firefighters from as far away as Kamloops and several locals, including our local Improvement District trustee.
    Ideas suggested and explored:

    * Slow trains down for less friction, and lessen possibility of collisions and derailments.

    *Restrict grinding operations during fire season, notify residents online, or otherwise, as to grinding schedule so steps towards fire protection can be implemented by rural land-owners. 

    *Install more “hot boxes” in the drier areas for quicker fire detection.

    *Carry more cabooses with spotters and available technology for spotting trouble during high fire hazard season.

    *Carry water tanks and sprayers on the end of trains to extinguish any sparks as the train passes. Spray water during fire season, all trains.

    *Create specific plans with local and regional fire services to clear debris off tracks in the spring through controlled burning. Herbicides only kill the plants and create more debris, as well as create dangers to wildlife and humans. Burning is a tried and true method of clearing detritus, and traditional activity for First Nations.

    *Educate and facilitate people on how to keep their properties “fire smart”, and find help for those who are incapable of this work (seniors, handicapped, etc.). Funding helpers who clean up hazardous debris: people operating weed-wackers, chain saws, trailers for removal, for example. 

    *Step up education on “who you gonna call?”. Everyone should have the number readily available for reporting fires, and know what information (location, size of fire, possible source, etc.) to relay to the fire services.
 

    
*Insure that every locality– municipal, first nations, and private– has a mandatory fire prevention plan, and it is carried out consistently. It only works if everyone does it. These plans should be made available to anyone available online and/or in print.

    Conclusion:

    We will try our utmost to get these ideas into the hands of those who can legislate and enforce them. We are putting our trust into the hands of our elected representatives, but when this fails, the people must be heard. Railways are corporations, and they will need regulations to follow, and penalties must in place for negligence. We need specific rules for specific places at specific times. Vague wording in legislation just wastes time and money on lawsuits, a game only corporations can afford to play. We must have positive improvements in prevention before next year’s fire season if we are to see a reduction in railway sparked fires. Fire prevention must come first, as our firefighters can only do so much to keep us out of harm’s way; the onus is on the railways to minimize the dangers their economic activity generates. We urge the reviewers of the Railway Safety Act to update and upgrade, knowing Canadians are not feeling safe within the bounds of  the current legislation. 

  39. ESCALATE!!!! you have no idea the crap belching choking smoke full throttle from bc southern rail. do you know what would happen 100 or less years ago?

    • trainjane permalink

      In this regard, Mr. Prokovich, I think we do not agree. Escalation creates more problems, but regulation, if written from a health perspective, could create a much-needed solution to air quality concerns from diesel engine idling by railways.

  40. metro vancouver passed an off road diesel emissions bylaw last year and still do jack crap, also health and safety canada is a joke saying it’s out of their hands, all governments and politicians involved in this problem do not give a ****. we have been fighting diesel pollution for years and now it’s worse than ever. especially bc southern rail , we have have had meetings with the city of new westminster bc and the railroads for ten years , same old **** keep fighting, once again especially through residential areas worn out train engines belching smoke full throttle shaking and vibrating the houses around here. we have been told by Frank Butzzlear president of bc southern rail this above problem full throttle and choking the neighbour hood even at times windows and doors are closed. CN and CPR have very few problems around here i assume proper maintenance. so we should be like the INDIANS and blockade or whatever it takes.nobody wants violence but how much do people have put up with? we’re all fed up, repeatedly after ten years keep fighting to try and resolve and get some courtesy. we don’t go to their house honking horns all night and belching diesel smoke, we would be fined and or arrested they are NOT ABOVE THE L:AW. so treat them as they treat us with arrogance.

    • trainjane permalink

      Hello Mr. Prokovich,

      I think we already explained that Metro Vancouver’s issue with railway diesel emissions is a jurisdictional issue. Metro Vancouver has gone to considerable lengths to address this specific issue, but, as I understand from what I have read, the railways do not agree that they are accountable to Metro’s diesel emissions bylaw.

      We have fielded complaints about noise and emissions from people concerned about CN’s and CP’s operations as well.

      And lastly, we agree that no one is above the law, and therefore we cannot condone any sort of unlawful tresspassing or blockading of railways. What’s needed is for Ottawa to implement regulations to address and protect public health from prolonged periods of exposure from diesel emissions from rail operations.

  41. gary prokovich permalink

    hello trainjane, where you understand railways not accountable to metro’s diesel emissions bylaw i suggest you look up GVRD’s emissions bylaw regulation NO. 1161, 2012 adopted March 02 2012 or request a book of bylaws regulation then explain to me how you understand their regulations, i must not be reading their explanation of these bylaws correctly, gladly to hear from your comments after you get these reg”s. gary prokovich

    • trainjane permalink

      Actually, Mr. Prokovich, I’ve asked the same questions as you, and directly of them, and numerous times. I understand what you are saying. However, I also understand from my conversations and correspondence with Metro Vancouver is although it was intended to include the railways in the context of the diesel emissions bylaw, it has become a jurisdictional issue. Your argument is not with me. I agree that there is a very serious problem with rail emissions, and think that any solution has to be handed to the railwys from the top down, via Ottawa. That’s my opinion. Wish I could change the current situation. That’s why I write about it.

  42. gary prokovich permalink

    NOT soon enough, after ten years of getting ****** the GOVERNMENTS known as CLOWNS do not care but let your car smoke a little and you will be forced to go to aircare which is not needed except big trucks and trains. politicians are more worried about their pockets and time off to do nothing about serious pollution problems, there are facts about diesel emissions causing cancer as bad as cigarets or worse so who is feeding who crap. not every body is stupid.

    • trainjane permalink

      I agree that it is time for rail to lose its “immunity card” when it comes to its emissions and impact on community airsheds. It’s long, long, overdue.

  43. Stop SRY Noise permalink

    Dec 2014

    SRY in New Westminster has a front man, Singh Biln, for community engagement and handling complains. Mr. Biln is a pleasant fellow, but by all evidence it may be mere window dressing.

    SRY has had many, many complaints. They have refused to enact procedures that could reduce or eliminate the sounding requirements for the road crossings.

    The underlying problem is a ridiculous piece of regulation, adopted by the province from the feds, that states the sounding pattern must be the morse code Q to signal the presence of the Queen. This is linked to the shipping industry of eons ago. WHAT? What are the politicians and bureaucrats doing sitting on their hands and letting these regulations stand pat?

    Next, the decibel levels of the horns used is atrocious, absurdly deafening when used within a kilometre of any person or animal. Some of the train drivers are clowns as they use full on air horn blasts for several seconds in consecutive order. That is well beyond any reasonable need for collision avoidance.

    Keep pounding SRY, the politicians, the bureaucrats, and the train drivers with complaints. If enough people ramp this up they will tire of it.

    Enough is enough.

    • trainjane permalink

      The impact of train whistles on residential communities is a problem from coast to coast, literally. On the east coast, city council in Halifax will be debating this very issue this week.

      What’s needed, in my opinion, is a federal study to examine how seriously the health and wellbeing of Canadians is being affected by this archaic practice and an inquiry into implementing alternate methods of signalling, particularly at night to protect the many, many people now trying to just get a decent night’s sleep.

  44. Stop SRY Noise permalink

    Folks in Surrey, New Westminster, Delta, and other places far and wide:

    SRY Southern Railway has pushed the city to pay for their liability protection for collisions at crossings. This is absurd in nature. If the railway is negligent in any collision with property or person, they should be held accountable to the point of bankruptcy, if needed. The public purse should not be protecting these private entities. Really, why is the mindset at these railways that of an autocrat dictator?

    Now they are saying that automatic crossing protection mechanisms will cost above $600,000 per crossing. A private auditor ought to chase down the money, follow the transactions, follow the cost quotations to find where all this taxpayer money is being diverted to? Who is reaping the benefit at $600K/crossing? Consultants? The American manufacturer? Are there any conflicts in the process?

    What a waste of money this method of “whistle cessation” is! The root of the problem is the manner and methods used by the train companies for “warning” at crossings in residential areas. The warning only needs to be conveyed to the point of crossing, not more than 200 meters in all cases. There is NO valid reason for safety or otherwise to use horn equipment that produces extreme noise to “warn” somebody over 2000 meters away.

    Any railway company, SRY included, that does not step up and propose a change to the laws and regulations to curtail their noise pollution is showing that they have no real concern to correct the underlying issue. This industry is old fashion, largely dirty to the environment, and run by people who are “old school”, without innovation, and with little to no regard to the public disturbance the cause.

    Fix the problem… change the laws, change the regulations, and enforce them with heavy fines. Community sustainability and the health of the populace depends upon it.

    Keep hammering away at the politicos and the train management – change is the only option. Status quo has got to go.

    • trainjane permalink

      We agree it’s time to find a better warning system that is less disruptive to residents, and one that addresses the serious health questions that prolonged, extended, or nighttime whistling is having on so many people.

      There has to be a better way to keep railways safe that does not impact the public, or the public purse, so much.

  45. Brandon permalink

    I understand that the trains are disruptive to sleep and all as I live near a train intersection in New Westminster. I understand with the train idling issues that some people have. As to the people complaining about horn honks at every intersection that has been what trains have done forever in Canada. You knew there was a train near by why did you choose to move there. Just like you don’t choose to live on the side of a really busy street when you have children. So stop blaming the trains for doing what the have to do and move where there isn’t a train if it bugs you that much.

    • trainjane permalink

      We’re glad that you are not experiencing the problems that so many other residents are.

      Many of the concerns being raised are not about how the railway was, but how it has changed, that is making people step forward and speak up.

  46. Natalie permalink

    I just rented a place on Spuraway ave Coquitlam and noise from trains are terrible. Unless we keep windows locked up, the honking is ridiculous. During day is bearable but at night, i dont understand the constant honking at wee hours of morning. No one is really around at those hours if its safety and to have to honk 5 times (i counted it trying to sleep) for what? And its not short honks either! I’ve noted it at around 11 and 2 am and know that there is another atleast around 3/4am. I cant imagine how it is for people who live closer, but if definitely is noise pollution up here and pretty disruptive. I dont even know why they do it at night, or have to do it that many times or that loud – surely there must be some limitation on this?! I hope someone does something about it, we just moved in….i’m sure its been going on for years upsetting people. Any advice on how to push this forward, i will help.

  47. I live in the small hamlet of yahk BC. the train tracks run right through the center of our community and within the last 2 years CP rail has decided to move there switching yard from cranbrook bc to our community 40 minutes west. this has caused much frustration and fear and countless safety problems for our town. we have already had two derailments which luckily did not have any serious repercussions however the potential for a serious disaster as we have seen in other parts of our country over the past few years is very real. there are homes businesses a community hall provincial park and a school here all within meters of the tracks. the train noise and constant blocking of both crossings has impacted everyone in a negative way. we are tired of it and want them to take their switching yard outside of town. all night long we hear train cars bang together so loud it sounds like a bomb going off they lay on their horns all the way through town day and night, we are constantly dealing with blocked intersections. like i said these tracks divide our town in half. there have been a couple instances where both intersections have been blocked at the same time leaving emergency vehicles to have to wait for crews to clear the way for them to get through and countless times residents who live on that side of the tracks have had to wait long periods of time to get across to the highway. on top of it being unfair to our community members it is eventually going to cost someone there life or there home because of CPR’s plain negligence and unapologetic disrespect to our community. it is also hurting local businesses people are leaving motels campgrounds etc, because they cant take the noise every night all night long. we have filed complaints and made numerous phone calls and written letters to them with nothing back accept a to bad deal with it attitude. they think they are above the law and as a community we are absolutely tired of it.

    • trainjane permalink

      Have you considered contact the Canadian Transportation Agency with your complaint? It would also be interesting to see how the approval for such a major operational change was made.

      Public crossings may be blocked by stopped trains for a maximum 5 minutes according to Canadian Railway Operating Rules. Through trains have no such provisions. If the problem is with a train stopped on the crossing in excess of 5 minutes, contact the local office of Transport Canada and report it. It’s a safety issue, and TC is very good at responding to such incidents.

  48. frustrated in Coquitlam permalink

    Just this morning I shed tears because of the train in my back yard. I had another terrible night’s sleep and needed a nap today but there was a train idling right behind my fence directly behind my backyard. Its vibrations and sounds were so strong I could not sleep, and I am sooo tired, please let me tell you my family’s story with the trains in our back yard.
    We live in Coquitlam and years ago, there wasn’t a train stop in my back yard but one day CP decided to put a switch there directly in a neighbourhood. Now the trains will stop and idle there for hours and hours at a time sometimes its days long as one train leaves another pull in to idle. Now can you imagine living just feet away from a running train. It is so unbearably loud and the vibrations sometimes feels like someone is drilling a hole in your brain. All the kids in the neighbourhood must play with all that pollution bellowing right in their backyards. When a train is idling in the summer time you cannot have the back doors open as then you can’t have a conversation inside your own home, or watch tv without having to crank it up. At night, every single room must have a fan running full blast to drain the sound of the train out so we can try to sleep.
    Sleep is very important to our health and interrupted sleep is very unhealthy. Can you imagine trying to live your life in your own home a train rolls up and for hours and hours and bellows pollution directly at your kids playing in the yard, and the noise is so loud at night that you cannot sleep. My children wake up in the middle of the night and complain ‘I can’t sleep the train is too laud and hurts my head’.
    I day-dream of finding a lawyer (pro bono of course) who will help us sue CP and all of us in this neighbourhood get compensated for their lack of social and environment responsibility.
    You see all CP needs to do is to move the stop down the track about 100-200 feet so that it is not directly idling in a neighbourhood (not much eh, such an easy solution). It makes sense that its not a huge request and that then they will be not harming families directly. But when ever I have asked them in the past they say they have no desire to move down the track a little way for us. They just don’t care about us and that’s why they just put a stop in a neighbourhood with no awareness or compassion for the people living there.
    So if you know anyone who is a lawyer or can help us to sue CP or at the least get them to listen to this community that is asking very little from them please let me know.
    Frustrated in Coquitlam

    • trainjane permalink

      We believe you are the person who went to the media with this story some time back. Have you gotten in touch with the Canadian Transportation Agency regarding making a formal complaint? Have you written to CP about your concerns? Have you contacted your MP or city hall and asked for support in this matter?

      The combination of noise and vibration could be the basis of a formal complaint to the CTA. Fumes are a separate issue.

      On that basis, I would recommend a well-written letter be given to our federal Environment Minister, Catherine McKenna. Include a photo or two if you wish.

      Obviously, you are a persevering person, and you’ll need that to get through this.

      The lawyer route could take you a very, very, long time and we suggest exploring all other options first.

      Keep in touch, and let us know what responses you receive.

  49. Why the train has to honk so long and at hight time , mid night or early morning ? This is very annoying !

    • Trains must use their whistle at all public crossings, (generally speaking) unless the railway, Transport Canada, and the local city or municipal authorities enter into an agreement for whistle cessation. This is a very costly process,(well into the six figure range of costs) which is a problem unto itself.

      Unless this complex agreement has been reached, on a per-crossing basis, train crews have to abide by rule 14l, and use the whistle, regardless of the time of day.

      Welcome to a major problem between railways and communities.

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