Statistical Summary – Railway Occurrences 2009

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Foreword

This document provides users of Canadian railway safety data with an annual summary of selected statistics on rail occurrences. It covers federally regulated railways only. Provincial data reported to the TSB are not included in this report.

Users of these statistics are advised that, in a live database, the occurrence data are constantly being updated. Consequently, the statistics can change slightly over time. Further, as many occurrences are not formally investigated, information recorded on some occurrences may not have been verified. Therefore, caution should be used when utilizing these statistics. The 2009 statistics presented here reflect the TSB database updated as of April 9, 2010.

To enhance awareness and increase the safety value of the material presented in the TSB Statistical Summary, Railway Occurrences 2009, readers are encouraged to copy or reprint in whole, or in part, for further distribution of the data presented (with acknowledgement of the source).

The TSB is an independent agency operating under its own Act of Parliament. Its sole aim is the advancement of transportation safety.

Comments on this document can be forwarded to the following address:

Transportation Safety Board of Canada
Communications Division
Place du Centre
200 Promenade du Portage
4th Floor
Gatineau, Quebec
K1A 1K8

Telephone: (819) 994-3741
Facsimile: (819) 997-2239
E-mail: communications@tsb.gc.ca

© Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada 2009
Cat. No. TU1-2/2009E
ISBN 978-1-100-17620-8


Railway Occurrences in 2009

Accidents

Overview of Accidents and Casualties (Tables 1 to 3 - Appendix A)

In 2009, 1,038 rail accidents1 were reported to the TSB (Figure 1), a 12.1% decrease from the 2008 total of 1,181 and a 23.3% decrease from the 2004-2008 average of 1,353.

Figure 1 - Rail Accidents, 2000-2009 [D]

Figure 1 - Rail Accidents, 2000-2009

Freight trains accounted for 68.2% of all trains involved in rail accidents in 2009, followed by single cars/cuts of cars and Track units in proportions of 12.1% and 7.0% respectively.

The largest proportion of reported rail accidents are non-main-track related. In 2009, these accounted for more than half of the total (Figure 2). Typically, most non-main-track accidents are minor, occurring during switching operations at speeds of less than 10 mph.

Main-track derailments and collisions accounted for 7.0% of all accidents in 2009, down from 11% in the previous year.

In 2009, 17.9% of rail accidents involved vehicles or pedestrians at highway-rail crossings, virtually unchanged from 17.8% over the previous five years.

Figure 2 - Rail Accidents by Type, 2009 [D]

Figure 2 - Rail Accidents by Type, 2009

In 2009, 133 accidents involved dangerous goods (either rail cars or road vehicles carrying or having recently carried dangerous goods), down from the 2008 total of 153, and also down from the five-year average of 189. Of these, 84.2% were non-main-track accidents. Three accidents resulted in a dangerous goods release, same as the 2008 total, and down from the five-year average of five.

Rail fatalities totalled 71 in 2009, down from 74 in 2008 and the five-year average of 91. Of the rail fatalities, trespasser2 fatalities was the largest fatality category with 52 in 2009, down 11.6% from the five-year average (Figure 3). Crossing fatalities totalled 19 in 2009, down from the 2008 total of 26, and down 32.6% from the five-year average of 28. In 2009, no employee was fatally injured, down from the five-year average of three.

Figure 3 - Fatalities by Type of Occurrence, 2000-2009 [D]

Figure 3 - Fatalities by Type of Occurrence, 2000-2009

A total of 49 serious injuries resulted from rail occurrences in 2009 (Figure 4), down from 64 in 2008 and down from the five-year average of 73. Trespasser injuries totalled 15 in 2009, down 25.0% from the 2008 total of 20 and down 40.5% from the five-year average of 25. Crossing accidents3 resulted in 21 injuries, down from 36 in 2008 and down from the five-year average of 38. The remaining thirteen injuries occurred in other types of accidents.

Figure 4 - Serious Injuries by Type of Occurrence, 2000-2009 [D]

Figure 4 - Serious Injuries by Type of  Occurrence, 2000-2009

Accidents by Type (Tables 4a to 9)

Main-track accidents: The number of main-track accidents (accidents other than crossing and trespasser accidents which occur on main-track or spurs) totaled 169 in 2009 (Figure 5), down from 209 in 2008 and from the five-year average of 229. Rail activity on main-track decreased by 13.1%4 from the previous year, and the main-track accident rate decreased 6.9%, from 2.5 main-track accidents per million main-track train-miles in 2008 to 2.3 in 2009.

Figure 5 - Main-Track Accidents and Accident Rates, 2000-2009 [D]

Figure 5 - Main-Track Accidents and Accident Rates, 2000-2009

Main-track collisions and derailments are the most serious categories of rail accidents in terms of financial loss and potential risk to the public; (e.g., when passenger trains are involved or dangerous goods are released from trains that derail while travelling at high speeds in populated areas.)

There were five main-track collisions in 2009, down one from the 2008 total (Figure 6) and unchanged from the five-year average of five. No fatalities or serious injuries resulted from main-track collisions in 2009, and none resulted in the release of dangerous goods.

A total of 68 main-track derailments were reported in 2009, a 47.3% decrease from the 2008 total of 129 and a 56.7% decrease from the five-year average of 157. The number of main-track derailments per million main-track train-miles decreased to 0.94 in 2009 compared to 1.55 recorded in 2008 and the five-year average of 1.86.

Figure 6 - Main-Track Collisions and Derailments, 2000-2009 [D]

Figure 6 - Main-Track Collisions and Derailments, 2000-2009

No fatalities or serious injuries resulted from main-track derailments in 2009.

In 2009, 12 main-track derailments involved dangerous goods, down from 23 in 2008 and from the five-year average of 29. One of these resulted in a release of dangerous goods.

In 2009, 31.1% of assigned factors5 for main-track derailments were equipment-related compared to 27.3% in 2008 and the five-year average of 34.0%. Track-related represents 40.5% of assigned factors in 2009, compared to 40.7% in 2008 and 37.3% for the five-year average.

Non-main-track accidents: Non-main-track collisions totalled 95 in 2009, up from 90 in 2008 (Figure 7) and down from the five-year average of 105. Derailments occurred in 48.4% of non-main-track collisions, and 73.9% of these non-main-track collisions involved the derailment of one or two cars.

Figure 7 - Non-Main-Track Collisions and Derailments, 2000-2009 [D]

figure 7 - Non-Main-Track Collisions and  Derailments, 2000-2009

No fatalities or serious injuries resulted from non-main-track collisions in 2009.

Dangerous goods were involved in 33.7% of non-main-track collisions, none of which resulted in a release of product.

Factors assigned to non-main-track collisions are mostly rules-related (78.7%) (e.g., non-compliance with prescribed procedures). Failure to protect, such as improper positioning of movements and handling of switches, was assigned most often as a factor.

There were 495 non-main-track derailments in 2009 (Figure 7), down 13.3% from last year and down 26.7% from the five-year average of 675. In 77.2% of these accidents involved the derailment of one or two cars.

No fatalities or serious injuries resulted from non-main-track derailments in 2009.

Dangerous goods cars were involved in 16.2% of non-main-track derailments, but none resulted in a release of dangerous goods.

In 2009, there was a 32.1% decrease in rules-related factors (e.g., non-compliance with prescribed procedures) assigned to non-main-track derailments compared to the five-year average; as well as a 25.2% decrease in track-related factors assigned. Factors assigned in an accident are considered to have acted in combination to contribute to the occurrence.

Crossing accidents: Crossing accidents represent one of the most serious types of rail accidents in terms of casualties; in 2009 16.7% resulted in either serious or fatal injuries. Although crossing accidents do not usually result in substantial damage to railway property or equipment, the motor vehicles involved are usually heavily damaged or destroyed.

There were 186 crossing accidents in 2009, down from 222 recorded in 2008 and down from the five-year average of 239. Accidents at public automated crossings (100) decreased 12.3% from the 2008 total of 114 and decreased 18.6% from the five-year average of 123. Accidents at public passive crossing (55) decreased 12.7% from the 2008 total of 63. Accidents at private crossings decreased 26.1% from the five-year average of 41. The proportion of crossing accidents that occurred at public automated crossings increased from 51.4% in 2008 to 53.8% in 2009(Figure 8). Although there are nearly twice as many public passive crossings as public automated ones, the higher number of accidents occurring at automated crossings is due in part to higher vehicle and train traffic volumes at these crossings.

Figure 8 - Crossing Accidents by Type of Crossing, 2009 [D]

Figure 8 - Crossing Accidents by Type of Crossing, 2009

There were 17 fatal crossing accidents in 2009, down from 24 in 2008 and down from the five-year average of 25. Although crossing accidents involving pedestrians accounted for only 8.1% of crossing accidents in 2009, they accounted for 23.5% of fatal crossing accidents. Crossing-related fatalities totaled 19 in 2009, compare to 26 in 2008 and a decrease of 32.1% from the five-year average of 28.

In 2009, 6 crossing accidents resulted in derailments, the same as the 2008 total, but down from the five-year average of 7. Heavy vehicles (e.g., dump trucks, tractor trailers) were involved in 15.6% of crossing accidents in 2009; however they accounted for 83.3% of those resulting in a derailment.

Crossing accidents in Quebec, Ontario and Alberta were at least 25% lower than their respective five-year averages (Figure 9), while accidents in other provinces were close to their last five-year average.

Figure 9 - Crossing Accidents by Province [D]

Figure 9 - Crossing Accidents by Province

Trespasser accidents: Trespasser accidents involve persons, primarily pedestrians, not authorized to be on railway rights-of-way and who are struck by rolling stock other than at railway crossings. They totaled 71 in 2009, down from the 2008 total of 73 and down from the five-year average of 90.

In 2009, Ontario represented 49.3% of trespasser accidents with a total of 35, British Columbia represented 18.3%, and Quebec 15.5% of all trespasser accidents.

In 2009, the proportion of fatal trespasser accidents (73.2%) was higher than the five-year average of 65.5%. In addition, the proportion of trespasser accidents resulting in serious injuries (21.1%) was lower than the five-year average of 27.5%.

Figure 10 - Trespasser Accidents by Province [D]

Figure 10 - Trespasser Accidents by Provinc

Incidents

Overview of Incidents (Tables 10 and 11)

In 2009, there were 207 reported rail incidents, down from 216 in 2008 and down from the five-year average of 232.

Figure 11 - Rail Incidents, 2000-2009 [D]

Figure 11 - Rail Incidents, 2000-2009

DG leaker incident involves the unintentional release of a hazardous material while in transportation and does not involve an accident. The vast majority of these incidents involve small quantities of products. The reported DG leaker incidents totaled 78 in 2009, which is a 21.9% increase from the 2008 total of 64 and a 20.2% decrease from the five-year average of 98. In 2000, DG leaker incidents represented 57.0% of all incidents. In 2009, DG leaker incidents accounted for 37.7% of reported rail incidents. (Figure 12).

In 2009, there were 106 incidents where the movement exceeded the limit of authority6, compared to 111 in 2008 and the five-year average of 101.

Factors assigned in non-dangerous goods incidents were primarily operational or rules-related, most frequently involving an overlap of authorities or a failure to protect.

Figure 12 - Rail Incidents by Type [D]

Figure 12 - Rail Incidents by Type


Appendix A - Rail Occurrence Tables

Table 1: Railway Occurrences1 and Casualties 2000-2009
  1. For federally-regulated railways only.
  2. Data from 2001 to 2007 have been adjusted in light of clarifications to industry of TSB's reporting requirements.
  3. Main-track train-miles are estimated. (Source: Railways Annual Reports submitted to Transport Canada.)
  4. Accidents which occurred on main-track or spurs, excluding crossing and trespasser accidents.
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
 
Accidents
Main-Track Train Collisions 9 7 9 6 5 6 2 8 6 5
Main-Track Train Derailments - 1-2 cars2 63 71 66 83 96 102 83 76 67 39
Main-Track Train Derailments - 3 or more cars2 68 61 58 73 64 96 56 83 62 29
Crossing Accidents 264 280 263 251 236 269 246 221 222 186
Non-Main-Track Train Collisions 113 108 131 111 123 98 110 102 90 95
Non-Main-Track Train Derailments - 1-2 cars2 270 533 482 525 562 588 567 456 428 382
Non-Main-Track Train Derailments - 3 or more cars2 117 181 182 170 151 170 136 175 143 113
Collisions/Derailments Involving Track Units 16 19 11 23 26 19 17 31 27 50
Employee/Passenger Accidents 13 8 8 6 12 8 15 18 12 12
Trespasser Accidents 78 95 78 80 73 65 99 82 91 102
Fires/Explosions 32 36 25 23 15 17 25 25 12 20
Other 19 48 26 16 23 20 24 27 39 36
Total 1054 1432 1334 1352 1413 1476 1372 1323 1181 1038
Reportable Incidents
Dangerous Goods Leaker 188 194 167 151 131 123 83 88 64 78
Main-Track Switch in Abnormal Position 17 9 9 11 12 10 7 7 13 4
Movement Exceeds Limits of Authority 102 101 99 102 95 91 101 106 111 106
Runaway Rolling Stock 9 10 18 13 11 16 12 13 16 11
Other 14 15 15 18 8 5 18 9 12 8
Total 330 329 308 295 257 245 221 223 216 207
Million Main-Track Train-Miles (MMTTM)3 80.1 79.9 81.3 80.6 82.6 85.8 86.9 84.5 83.1 72.2
Main-Track Accidents4/MMTTM 2.4 2.8 2.3 2.6 2.7 2.9 2.4 3.0 2.5 2.3
 
Accidents Involving Dangerous Goods
Main-Track Train Derailments 30 17 25 38 37 32 18 35 23 12
Crossing Accidents 12 7 6 3 11 15 4 6 4 3
Non-Main-Track Train Collisions 50 40 48 37 44 44 41 41 33 32
Non-Main-Track Train Derailments 149 128 129 139 106 112 109 100 84 80
All Others 8 13 13 8 10 9 11 8 9 6
Total 249 205 221 225 208 212 183 190 153 133
Accidents with a Dangerous Goods Release 7 5 5 9 7 7 4 3 3 3
 
Fatalities
Crossing Accidents 33 41 46 28 25 37 27 26 26 19
Trespasser Accidents 54 56 50 45 68 64 59 56 47 52
All Others 1 2 0 6 8 2 8 3 1 0
Total 88 99 96 79 101 103 94 85 74 71
 
Serious Injuries
Crossing Accidents 33 47 42 52 50 55 28 22 36 21
Trespasser Accidents 23 23 21 19 34 17 28 27 20 15
All Others 11 21 10 10 9 6 14 10 8 13
Total 67 91 73 81 93 78 70 59 64 49
Table 2 Fatalities and Serious Injuries by Type of Occurrence and Person Type, 2000-2009
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
 
Main-Track Train Collisions
Fatalities 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0
Serious Injuries 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Main-Track Train Derailments
Fatalities 0 0 0 2 2 0 3 1 0 0
Serious Injuries 1 9 0 2 0 0 2 2 0 0
Crossing Accidents
Fatalities 33 41 46 28 25 37 27 26 26 19
Serious Injuries 33 47 42 52 50 55 28 22 36 21
Non-Main-Track Train Collisions
Fatalities 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Serious Injuries 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Non-Main-Track Train Derailments
Fatalities 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Serious Injuries 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0
Coll./Derail. Involving Track Units
Fatalities 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Serious Injuries 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 2
Employee/Passenger Accidents
Fatalities 1 0 0 1 5 2 4 1 1 0
Serious Injuries 8 8 6 3 7 4 9 8 7 8
Trespasser Accidents
Fatalities 54 56 50 45 68 64 59 56 47 52
Serious Injuries 23 23 21 19 34 17 28 27 20 15
Fires/Other
Fatalities 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
Serious Injuries 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 3
Dangerous Goods Leaker
Fatalities 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Serious Injuries 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 0
Other Incidents
Fatalities 0 0 0 2 0 0 1 0 0 0
Serious Injuries 1 3 2 3 2 0 2 0 1 0
Fatalities by Person Type
Employees 1 2 0 6 6 2 6 2 1 0
Passengers 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 1 0
Pedestrians 8 6 10 6 4 11 9 11 13 4
Vehicle Occupants 28 34 38 23 23 28 15 18 14 17
Trespassers 51 56 48 44 68 62 60 54 43 49
Other Persons 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 2 1
Total 88 99 96 79 101 103 94 85 74 71
Serious Injuries by Person Type
Employees 10 16 10 11 9 6 14 11 11 13
Passengers 1 7 0 0 0 1 1 0 1 1
Pedestrians 7 5 6 6 2 3 5 6 3 0
Vehicle Occupants 27 42 36 44 48 51 24 18 30 22
Trespassers 21 20 21 20 32 17 25 24 19 13
Other Persons 1 1 0 0 2 0 1 0 0 0
Total 67 91 73 81 93 78 70 59 64 49
Table 3 Rail Accidents by Train Type1, 2000-2009
  1. As some accidents may involve more than one train, the number of trains involved may differ from the total number of accidents.
  2. Category "Other" includes otherwise uncategorized data submitted in June 2007 as a result of clarification to industry of TSB reporting requirements.
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
 
Freight Train
Main-Track Train Collisions 13 9 16 10 7 6 2 12 9 8
Main-track train derailments 115 125 123 153 149 189 134 155 118 65
Non-main-track train collisions 121 101 133 104 119 88 117 96 99 82
Non-main-track train derailments 327 348 319 339 413 486 447 476 479 393
Crossing 229 245 235 221 194 220 200 181 186 149
Trespasser 49 56 44 47 73 58 70 69 50 50
Other 54 55 45 41 36 32 49 58 54 49
Total 908 939 915 915 991 1079 1019 1047 995 796
Passenger Train
Main-track train collisions 1 1 0 1 1 0 0 0 2 0
Main-track train derailments 3 5 0 2 3 5 3 0 3 0
Non-main-track train collisions 0 0 0 8 5 4 1 4 3 1
Non-main-track train derailments 4 8 7 11 10 10 10 8 17 11
Crossing 18 26 23 18 32 37 34 28 24 25
Trespasser 29 23 29 18 26 24 18 32 21 20
Other 8 13 8 1 3 4 6 11 10 10
Total 63 76 67 59 80 84 72 83 80 67
Track Unit
Main-track train collisions 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Main-track train derailments 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Non-main-track train collisions 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Non-main-track train derailments 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Crossing 5 5 1 5 8 8 7 3 6 4
Trespasser 0 1 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0
Other 22 28 17 35 46 33 33 47 44 78
Total 27 35 18 41 55 41 41 50 50 82
Single car/Cut of cars
Main-track train collisions 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
Main-track train derailments 2 1 2 1 0 2 1 3 2 1
Non-main-track train collisions 55 35 51 49 61 49 63 61 49 89
Non-main-track train derailments 17 23 22 32 20 35 73 76 49 42
Crossing 1 0 1 0 0 0 1 1 1 2
Trespasser 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Other 5 10 5 10 12 8 6 4 4 6
Total 80 69 81 92 93 94 144 145 105 141
Other2
Main-track train collisions 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 2 0 0
Main-track train derailments 4 1 2 3 8 4 1 4 6 2
Non-main-track train collisions 20 26 26 14 18 12 13 10 8 8
Non-main-track train derailments 42 341 324 322 283 243 182 85 37 59
Crossing 11 4 4 7 2 4 6 10 8 6
Trespasser 1 0 0 0 0 1 2 0 2 1
Other 5 19 5 3 3 6 6 12 3 6
Total 84 391 361 349 314 271 210 123 64 82
Table 4a Main-Track Train Derailments, 2000-2009
  1. MMTTM - Million main-track train-miles (Source: Transport Canada)
  2. BGTM - Billion gross ton-miles; (Source: Railway Association of Canada)
By Province
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Newfoundland & Labrador 2 3 1 0 0 2 1 1 1 0
Nova Scotia 2 3 1 0 2 0 1 2 1 1
New Brunswick 2 3 0 2 3 3 0 6 1 1
Quebec 15 19 26 27 23 26 21 12 16 8
Ontario 28 37 39 59 52 60 41 39 35 21
Manitoba 17 14 12 6 10 11 9 12 13 4
Saskatchewan 14 12 10 14 15 24 12 18 14 9
Alberta 15 17 16 19 23 29 20 30 30 14
British Columbia 27 24 19 29 32 43 34 39 18 10
Northwest Territories/Yukon 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Canada 122 132 124 156 160 198 139 159 129 68
Derailments per MMTTM1 1.52 1.65 1.53 1.93 1.94 2.31 1.60 1.88 1.55 0.94
Derailments per BGTM2 0.30 0.33 0.31 0.38 0.36 0.43 0.30 0.34 0.29 0.00
By Total Number of Derailed Cars per Accident
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Derailed Cars
1 11 15 13 8 15 16 17 14 12 10
2 11 8 4 8 6 9 3 10 6 3
3 6 9 6 5 7 9 0 8 5 3
4 24 22 26 35 22 40 23 27 24 13
5-10 27 22 22 25 29 38 30 38 27 10
10+ 122 132 124 156 160 198 139 159 129 68
Total 201 208 195 237 239 310 212 256 203 107
Table 4b Main-Track Train Derailments by Assigned Factors1, 2000-2009
  1. Federally regulated railway occurrences.
    TSB does not investigate all occurrences; therefore, assigned factors may not represent TSB findings.
    Occurrences are normally only reported to TSB with one assigned factor. The TSB may assign additional factors.
  2. Some factors are assigned by highest category (e.g. Equipment or Track), therefore the breakdowns may not sum up to the category total.
Assigned factors
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Environmental 0 5 2 5 7 11 8 17 12 5
Equipment - Total2 52 50 62 61 70 83 54 60 41 23
Axle 21 17 18 20 14 21 5 14 11 5
Brakes 7 5 10 6 9 13 8 8 3 6
Draft System 8 6 5 5 13 9 5 9 4 4
Superstrucure 7 6 7 6 3 7 6 8 5 0
Truck 2 3 12 13 11 8 8 5 5 1
Wheel 7 13 10 11 18 23 21 16 12 7
Track - Total 49 50 46 67 71 86 64 56 61 30
Geometry 22 22 26 31 23 34 23 22 22 8
Object on track 2 3 2 1 0 4 2 1 1 1
Other track material (OTM) 3 5 2 1 8 2 4 2 6 5
Rail 19 9 10 21 25 35 25 18 27 8
Roadbed 0 6 1 4 7 2 6 3 4 4
Switch 2 3 1 1 2 2 2 0 1 2
Turnouts 0 2 4 7 3 4 0 6 0 0
Actions - Total 22 34 19 24 23 28 22 19 20 8
Failure to Protect 6 6 3 5 4 4 3 4 8 3
Failure to Secure 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1
Failure to use Equipment Properly 6 13 12 11 6 11 6 6 6 4
Improper Loading/Lifting 1 1 1 0 1 0 2 3 1 0
Improper Placement/Position for Task 6 2 1 2 6 5 1 2 0 0
Inadequate/Inappropriate Maint. of Equipment 1 5 1 2 3 4 4 1 3 0
Operating at Improper Speed 1 5 1 3 1 2 4 0 2 0
Vandalism 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0
Other actions 1 0 0 1 1 2 2 1 0 0
Other assigned factors 13 7 15 13 17 17 19 25 16 8
Assigned factors - Total 136 146 144 170 188 225 167 177 150 74
Main-track train derailments by number of assigned factors
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
One factor assigned 108 120 108 136 140 174 123 148 120 65
More than one factor assigned 12 10 14 13 18 21 14 9 9 2
No factor assigned 2 2 2 7 2 3 2 2 0 1
Main-track train derailments - Total 122 132 124 156 160 198 139 159 129 68
Table 5a Non-Main-Track Train Collisions, 2000-2009
  1. Number of collisions with no derailment.
By Province
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Newfoundland & Labrador 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Nova Scotia 1 0 0 3 0 0 0 0 1 0
New Brunswick 1 2 1 2 1 1 5 1 3 1
Quebec 14 17 19 15 20 17 19 11 5 6
Ontario 42 42 53 47 28 28 25 29 25 24
Manitoba 11 12 14 7 14 11 7 13 9 15
Saskatchewan 4 5 5 10 4 5 8 10 10 5
Alberta 26 17 20 20 33 20 24 23 27 25
British Columbia 14 13 19 7 23 16 21 14 10 19
Northwest Territories/Yukon 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0
Canada 113 108 131 111 123 98 110 102 90 95
By Total Number of Derailed Cars per Accident
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Derailed Cars
01 55 65 79 68 69 63 56 41 32 49
1 25 22 21 20 26 14 28 23 23 26
2 19 10 16 13 14 12 10 15 11 8
3 7 5 8 1 9 5 7 8 9 5
4 2 3 3 4 2 1 4 8 8 3
5-10 4 3 2 4 3 3 5 5 5 3
10+ 1 0 2 1 0 0 0 2 2 1
Total 113 108 131 111 123 98 110 102 90 95
Table 5b Non-Main-Track Train Collisions by Assigned Factors1, 2000-2009
  1. Federally regulated railway occurrences.
    TSB does not investigate all occurrences; therefore, assigned factors may not represent TSB findings.
    Occurrences are normally only reported to TSB with one assigned factor. The TSB may assign additional factors.
Assigned factors
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Environmental 1 5 3 1 3 4 1 3 1 3
Equipment 1 5 2 6 1 1 1 4 1 1
Track 3 3 5 6 4 10 2 2 4 4
Actions - Total 90 90 111 85 114 83 107 88 71 74
Failure to Protect 48 58 78 62 70 52 64 59 49 50
Failure to Secure 23 21 15 11 30 16 26 17 6 11
Failure to use Equipment Properly 8 6 10 4 8 4 6 5 10 8
Improper Placement/Position for Task 1 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0
Inadequate/Inappropriate communications 2 1 3 3 1 2 2 3 0 1
Inadequate/Inappropriate Maint. of Equipment 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 0
Operating at Improper Speed 5 2 1 2 3 6 7 4 6 4
Vandalism 0 1 2 1 0 0 1 0 0 0
Other actions 3 1 2 1 1 2 0 0 0 0
Other assigned factors 46 28 31 22 26 20 15 19 20 12
Assigned factors - Total 141 131 152 120 148 118 126 116 97 94
Non-Main-Track Train Collisions by number of assigned factors
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
One factor assigned 86 86 108 98 99 78 93 92 85 94
More than one factor assigned 27 22 22 11 23 19 16 10 4 0
No factor assigned 0 0 1 2 1 1 1 0 1 1
Non-Main-Track Train Collision - Total 113 108 131 111 123 98 110 102 90 95
Table 6a Non-Main-Track Train Derailments, 2000-2009
By Province
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Newfoundland & Labrador 1 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 2
Nova Scotia 2 11 21 39 23 13 14 6 3 4
New Brunswick 7 24 26 26 19 16 24 11 16 8
Quebec 69 124 116 140 150 133 117 67 70 50
Ontario 108 239 246 227 227 233 201 164 136 108
Manitoba 38 53 53 63 58 56 52 48 65 73
Saskatchewan 26 56 34 45 57 70 48 68 50 43
Alberta 88 89 81 75 94 125 143 146 109 126
British Columbia 48 118 86 80 85 110 103 120 122 80
Northwest Territories/Yukon 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 1 0 1
Canada 387 714 664 695 713 758 703 631 571 495
By Total Number of Derailed Cars per Accident
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Derailed Cars
1 177 377 340 372 406 420 397 327 291 277
2 93 156 142 153 156 168 170 129 137 105
3 37 80 70 76 61 60 44 79 56 40
4 22 44 35 34 38 34 40 40 24 32
5-10 53 53 71 57 46 69 44 53 54 40
10+ 5 4 6 3 6 7 8 3 9 1
Total 387 714 664 695 713 758 703 631 571 495
Table 6b Non-Main-Track Train Derailments by Assigned Factors1, 2000-2009
  1. Federally regulated railway occurrences.
    TSB does not investigate all occurrences; therefore, assigned factors may not represent TSB findings.
    Occurrences are normally only reported to TSB with one assigned factor. The TSB may assign additional factors.
  2. Some factors are assigned by highest category (e.g. Equipment or Track), therefore the breakdowns may not sum up to the category total.
Assigned factors
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Environmental 6 33 14 45 38 32 18 40 46 21
Equipment - Total2 27 53 56 63 71 73 52 52 39 46
Axle 2 2 1 0 0 1 1 3 1 0
Brakes 8 12 11 11 12 21 13 9 12 17
Draft System 5 10 18 11 15 12 8 11 9 15
Superstrucure 2 9 9 15 10 11 9 9 7 4
Truck 2 11 9 13 15 13 11 7 4 3
Wheel 8 9 8 12 17 15 10 9 5 7
Track - Total 166 243 224 205 251 292 282 232 227 192
Appurtenances 1 2 3 1 1 3 2 1 1 0
Geometry 64 93 69 81 91 112 97 98 84 89
Object on track 5 11 1 6 8 8 14 1 6 5
Other track material (OTM) 24 32 25 19 22 21 25 14 8 11
Rail 18 22 30 24 24 24 32 29 30 22
Roadbed 4 7 8 4 13 13 6 7 7 4
Signals 0 1 2 1 1 0 0 1 1 0
Switch 21 38 32 31 42 51 48 34 56 35
Turnouts 26 33 52 35 41 54 48 31 27 23
Actions - Total 196 379 369 347 334 346 329 274 248 208
Failure to Protect 121 195 182 197 176 202 193 178 164 144
Failure to Secure 10 13 16 22 26 22 6 5 9 2
Failure to use Equipment Properly 24 114 123 78 81 84 93 65 45 43
Improper Loading/Lifting 12 5 5 5 1 8 3 0 6 2
Improper Placement/Position for Task 9 10 8 10 8 12 10 6 3 7
Inadequate/Inappropriate communications 2 7 3 2 5 4 4 1 5 2
Inadequate/Inappropriate Maint. of Equipment 6 11 11 4 9 2 5 7 0 0
Operating at Improper Speed 6 10 7 10 10 3 6 4 9 4
Vandalism 6 9 10 12 12 6 7 5 5 3
Other actions 0 5 4 7 6 3 2 3 2 1
Other assigned factors 54 67 43 65 58 49 57 48 30 31
Assigned factors - Total 449 775 706 725 752 792 738 646 590 498
Non-Main-Track train derailments by number of assigned factors
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
One factor assigned 324 656 612 621 643 698 631 599 550 490
More than one factor assigned 59 54 42 50 50 46 50 23 20 4
No factor assigned 4 4 10 24 20 14 22 9 1 1
Non-Main-Track train derailment- Total 387 714 664 695 713 758 703 631 571 495
Table 7 Crossing Accidents and Casualties by Type of Crossing and Protection, 2000-2009
  1. Figures in brackets denote the number of public grade crossings for federally-regulated railways in Canada by warning type as of November 2009.
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Accidents
Public Crossings1
Total Passive Warnings (11722) 85 77 96 72 64 71 81 75 63 55
Flashing Lights & Bells (3526) 95 102 88 85 75 103 73 64 73 55
Gates (2116) 42 44 41 51 42 53 36 37 39 44
Other Automated Warnings (61) 2 1 0 1 0 3 8 6 2 1
Total Automated Warnings (5703) 139 147 129 137 117 159 117 107 114 100
Sub-total (17425) 224 224 225 209 181 230 198 182 177 155
Private Crossings 37 48 33 36 51 34 46 34 39 30
Farm Crossings 3 8 5 6 4 5 2 5 6 1
Total 264 280 263 251 236 269 246 221 222 186
Fatal Accidents 30 35 41 24 21 34 24 23 24 17
Fatalities
Public Crossings
Total Passive Warnings 10 14 16 8 6 7 8 5 5 6
Flashing Lights & Bells 12 11 14 9 10 13 9 8 9 6
Gates 10 10 13 7 8 12 7 9 11 6
Other Automated Warnings 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
Total Automated Warnings 22 21 27 16 18 25 16 18 20 12
Sub-total 32 35 43 24 24 32 24 23 25 18
Private Crossings 1 5 3 2 0 4 3 3 0 1
Farm Crossings 0 1 0 2 0 1 0 0 1 0
Total 33 41 46 28 24 37 27 26 26 19
Serious Injuries
Public Crossings
Total Passive Warnings 6 12 18 15 15 9 9 14 12 9
Flashing Lights & Bells 16 20 13 23 21 23 11 4 16 8
Gates 7 6 6 8 11 15 6 3 2 3
Other Automated Warnings 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0
Total Automated Warnings 23 26 19 31 32 39 17 7 18 11
Sub-total 29 38 37 46 47 48 26 21 30 20
Private Crossings 3 7 5 6 3 6 2 1 4 1
Farm Crossings 1 2 0 0 0 1 0 0 2 0
Total 33 47 42 52 50 55 28 22 36 21
Table 8 Crossing Accidents and Related Casualties by Province, 2000-2009
  1. Figures in brackets denote the estimated number of public crossings for federally-regulated railways in each province as of November 2009. The Canada total is the actual figure. (Source: Transport Canada.)
  2. Includes crossing accidents on main track or on spurs per MMTTM - Million main-track train-miles. (Source: Transport Canada)
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Accidents1
Newfoundland & Labrador (5) 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0
Nova Scotia (180) 3 10 1 2 2 5 4 3 0 3
New Brunswick (347) 2 8 1 9 2 3 2 2 2 4
Quebec (1958) 44 43 44 36 62 56 39 40 27 28
Ontario (4312) 88 80 78 80 69 92 67 52 66 47
Manitoba (2027) 22 25 36 28 19 18 20 20 13 18
Saskatchewan (4065) 32 29 24 24 16 19 26 23 28 23
Alberta (3009) 45 54 55 38 38 56 56 48 54 36
British Columbia (1507) 28 30 24 33 26 18 31 33 32 25
Northwest Territories/Yukon (15) 0 1 0 1 2 1 0 0 0 2
Canada (17425) 264 280 263 251 236 269 246 221 222 186
Crossing Accidents per MMTTM2 2.93 3.13 2.92 2.80 2.55 2.81 2.58 2.38 2.44 2.37
Crossing Accidents with Derailment 9 12 9 4 9 12 4 6 6 6
Fatalities
Newfoundland & Labrador 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Nova Scotia 1 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
New Brunswick 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0
Quebec 8 4 9 4 9 7 7 1 6 1
Ontario 12 17 15 15 12 16 12 12 12 3
Manitoba 2 3 5 2 1 2 2 1 2 3
Saskatchewan 5 8 3 4 1 2 1 2 3 5
Alberta 3 5 10 3 2 6 4 5 2 3
British Columbia 2 2 4 0 0 3 1 5 1 3
Northwest Territories/Yukon 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Canada 33 41 46 28 25 37 27 26 26 19
Serious Injuries
Newfoundland & Labrador 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0
Nova Scotia 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0
New Brunswick 0 2 1 1 2 0 0 1 1 0
Quebec 6 4 6 5 14 11 4 2 3 3
Ontario 7 15 14 19 11 21 8 7 11 3
Manitoba 4 3 3 4 6 1 4 2 4 3
Saskatchewan 3 5 4 4 3 4 2 4 5 4
Alberta 8 13 12 11 9 12 8 4 7 5
British Columbia 5 4 2 8 5 3 1 2 5 3
Northwest Territories/Yukon 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Canada 33 47 42 52 50 55 28 22 36 21
Table 9 Trespasser Accidents and Related Casualties by Province, 2000-2009
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Accidents
Newfoundland & Labrador 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0
Nova Scotia 0 1 0 0 2 2 0 2 1 0
New Brunswick 1 0 2 0 0 2 1 4 2 3
Quebec 14 10 13 6 16 14 9 12 13 11
Ontario 41 42 43 38 45 43 43 47 37 35
Manitoba 1 7 3 3 3 6 5 7 4 1
Saskatchewan 2 3 0 2 3 0 2 0 3 4
Alberta 6 9 3 7 16 6 17 14 7 4
British Columbia 14 8 9 9 14 10 14 15 6 13
Northwest Territories/Yukon 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Canada 79 80 73 65 100 83 91 101 73 71
Fatal Accidents 54 56 50 45 67 64 58 56 47 52
Fatalities
Newfoundland & Labrador 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Nova Scotia 0 1 0 0 1 1 0 1 0 0
New Brunswick 1 0 2 0 0 1 0 3 2 3
Quebec 10 9 9 4 10 12 6 7 10 7
Ontario 30 29 33 30 32 33 31 32 24 30
Manitoba 0 2 1 2 3 4 1 2 2 1
Saskatchewan 1 3 0 0 4 0 1 0 2 2
Alberta 4 7 1 5 11 5 11 7 4 3
British Columbia 8 5 4 4 7 8 9 4 3 6
Northwest Territories/Yukon 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Canada 54 56 50 45 68 64 59 56 47 52
Serious Injuries
Newfoundland & Labrador 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0
Nova Scotia 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 1 0
New Brunswick 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 0 0
Quebec 3 1 3 2 6 2 3 3 0 2
Ontario 9 12 9 7 13 9 13 7 12 5
Manitoba 1 5 2 1 0 1 3 4 2 0
Saskatchewan 1 0 0 2 0 0 1 0 1 1
Alberta 5 2 2 2 5 1 3 4 2 1
British Columbia 4 3 5 5 8 2 4 8 2 6
Northwest Territories/Yukon 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Canada 23 23 21 19 34 17 28 27 20 15
Table 10 Reportable Incidents by Type and Assigned Factor1, 2000-2009
  1. Federally regulated railway occurrences.
    TSB does not investigate all occurrences; therefore, assigned factors may not represent TSB findings.
    Occurrences are normally only reported to TSB with one assigned factor. The TSB may assign additional factors.
  2. Excluding dangerous good incidents. See table 11 for dangerous good incidents.
Incidents by type
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Dangerous Goods Leaker 188 194 167 151 131 123 83 88 64 78
Main-Track Switch in Abnormal Position 17 9 9 11 12 10 7 7 13 4
Movement Exceeds Limits of Authority 102 101 99 102 95 91 101 106 111 106
Runaway Rolling Stock 9 10 18 13 11 16 12 13 16 11
Signal Less Restrictive than Required 2 7 3 2 1 1 6 0 3 1
Unprotected Overlap of Authorities 11 4 6 10 5 3 7 8 7 7
Crew Member Incapacitated 1 4 6 6 2 1 5 1 2 0
Incidents - Total 330 329 308 295 257 245 221 223 216 207
Assigned factors2
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Equipment 1 4 3 4 0 1 1 0 3 1
Individual/Personal 57 35 29 40 20 17 13 4 3 0
Track 3 5 3 3 0 2 3 0 2 2
Actions 125 108 104 117 110 108 112 90 144 126
Failure to Protect 45 42 39 40 39 35 31 38 55 34
Failure to Secure 4 6 9 7 6 10 6 1 8 7
Failure to use Equipment Properly 6 1 3 5 6 2 5 1 3 3
Inadequate/Inappropriate Communication 8 6 3 5 5 7 11 4 6 7
Lap of Authority 56 49 45 58 48 50 55 41 65 70
Vandalism 4 2 3 1 2 0 4 2 6 2
Other actions 2 2 2 1 4 4 0 3 1 3
Other assigned factors 4 4 7 3 3 1 6 3 4 1
Assigned Factors - Total 190 156 146 167 133 129 135 97 156 130
Incidents by number of assigned factors
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
One factor assigned 76 78 82 91 87 81 88 87 145 126
More than one factor assigned 56 37 32 37 23 24 21 5 6 2
No factor assigned 10 20 27 16 16 17 29 43 1 2
Incidents - Total 142 135 141 144 126 122 138 135 152 130
Table 11 DG Leaker Incidents by Province and Leak Location/Component1, 2000-2009
  1. Federally regulated railway occurrences.
    TSB does not investigate all occurrences; therefore, assigned factors may not represent TSB findings.
    Occurrences are normally only reported to TSB with one assigned factor. The TSB may assign additional factors.
  2. Some factors are assigned by highest category, therefore the breakdowns may not sum up to the category total.
DG Leaker Incidents by Province
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Newfoundland & Labrador 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Nova Scotia 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 1
New Brunswick 3 5 6 10 7 1 1 0 1 2
Quebec 12 8 8 9 7 8 8 6 6 10
Ontario 59 74 65 46 34 29 30 30 19 20
Manitoba 24 8 9 9 17 3 5 2 4 2
Saskatchewan 2 8 4 2 4 4 4 5 3 3
Alberta 54 43 43 45 31 29 13 20 15 29
British Columbia 34 47 32 30 31 48 22 25 15 11
Northwest Territories/Yukon 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Canada 188 194 167 151 131 123 83 88 64 78
DG Leaker by Location/Component
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
Structural 2 0 4 3 0 1 2 0 0 1
Safety Appurtenances 38 26 34 27 29 20 8 16 6 17
Operating Appurtenances 105 111 90 72 76 83 59 45 45 54
Auxiliary Appurtenances 28 34 26 26 16 12 3 6 2 2
Other Location/Component 15 21 8 16 8 8 7 6 8 3
Location/Component - Total 188 192 162 145 130 124 79 73 61 77
Factor other than location/component 9 4 2 4 2 2 2 3 7 1
Assigned factors - Total 197 196 164 149 132 126 81 76 68 78
DG Leaker Incidents by number of assigned factors
  2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
One factor assigned 177 186 162 143 127 119 79 76 61 78
More than one factor assigned 10 5 1 3 2 3 1 0 3 0
No factor assigned 1 3 4 5 2 1 3 12 0 0
DG Leaker Incident - Total 188 194 167 151 131 123 83 88 64 78

Appendix B – Definitions and Explanatory Notes

Definitions

The following definitions apply to railway occurrences that are required to be reported pursuant to the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act and the associated regulations.

Railway Occurrence

  1. Any accident or incident associated with the operation of rolling stock on a railway, and
  2. Any situation or condition that the Board has reasonable grounds to believe could, if left unattended, induce an accident or incident described in paragraph (a) above.

Reportable railway accident

An accident resulting directly from the operation of rolling stock, where:

  1. a person sustains a serious injury or is killed as a result of:
    1. being on board or getting off the rolling stock, or
    2. coming into contact with any part of the rolling stock or its contents, or
  2. the rolling stock:
    1. is involved in a grade-crossing collision,
    2. is involved in a collision or derailment and is carrying passengers,
    3. is involved in a collision or derailment and is carrying dangerous goods, or is known to have last contained dangerous goods the residue of which has not been purged from the rolling stock,
    4. sustains damage that affects its safe operation, or
    5. causes or sustains a fire or explosion, or causes damage to the railway, that poses a threat to the safety of any person, property or the environment.

Reportable railway incident

An incident resulting directly from the operation of rolling stock, where:

  1. a risk of collision occurs;
  2. an unprotected main track switch is left in an abnormal position;
  3. a railway signal displays a less restrictive indication than that required for the intended movement of rolling stock;
  4. an unprotected overlap of operating authorities occurs;
  5. a movement of rolling stock exceeds the limits of its authority;
  6. there is runaway rolling stock;
  7. any crew member whose duties are directly related to the safe operation of the rolling stock is unable to perform the crew member's duties as a result of a physical incapacitation that poses a threat to the safety of any person, property or the environment; or
  8. any dangerous goods are released on board or from the rolling stock.

Serious Injury

An injury that is likely to require admission to a hospital.

Dangerous Goods Involvement

An accident is considered to have dangerous goods involvement if any car in the consist carrying (or having last contained) a dangerous good derails, strikes or is struck by any other rolling stock or object. It does not mean that there was any release of any product. Also included are crossing accidents in which the motor vehicle involved (e.g. tanker truck) is carrying a dangerous good.

Explanatory Notes

Accidents by Railway

Accident totals are not presented by railway. The track, train and personnel in an occurrence may all belong to different companies; also an occurrence may have several contributing factors. Presenting data based purely on one of these criteria or factors would be misleading, and misinterpretation of data by readers could unfairly affect a company's competitive position.


  1. Refer to Appendix B for a definition of a reportable railway accident.
  2. Trespasser accidents involve persons, primarily pedestrians, not authorized to be on railway rights-of-way and who are struck by rolling stock other than at railway crossings.
  3. A crossing accident is when a railway rolling stock is involved in a grade-crossing collision with a motor vehicle or pedestrian, resulting in death, serious injury or property damage.
  4. As provided to TSB by the Strategic Information Branch of Transport Canada.
  5. Occurrences are normally only reported to TSB with one assigned factor. Since multiple factors can contribute to an occurrence, the TSB may assign additional factors to an occurrence.
  6. Movement exceeds limits of authority is when a train or track unit movement occupies a main track (including signalled sidings, signalled yard tracks and station tracks) or portion thereof without the required authorization.