Regina - runaway rail car - asphalt - news - co-op - refinery

Officials have not confirmed the exact route, but based on the rail car's starting and end points, this is the likely route it would have travelled through Regina. (CBC)

It's back to work for the company that lost control of a rail car in Regina a week ago.

Cando Rail Services, which looks after the movement of rail cars at the Co-op Refinery Complex, said Friday that they have reviewed the incident and made changes to the way they operate.

Around 11:55 p.m. CST on March 1, a rail car full of asphalt went on a free run from the refinery, crossing several city streets before coming to a stop 15 minutes later. No damage was done, and crews noticed what happened right away and retrieved the rail car.

It was noted that all rail crossings in the city have warning systems that are designed to activate automatically when a train comes along. There was no immediate confirmation that all the warning systems worked as anticipated.

"We deeply regret the incident," Lee Jebb, a vice-president at Cando, said in a statement Friday morning. "We are committed to running a safe operation."

The company said the rail car had been left unattended and "improperly secured," leading it to roll away.

According to the statement, Cando has made a number of changes to its procedures, including:

  • Stricter rules regarding handbrakes.
  • More crew observation and training.
  • New communications protocols.

Cando now has a policy to "interact better with the city's emergency response system," Jebb said in the statement, adding that new protocols are in place to "escalate the response whenever public safety" is involved.

Acting fire chief Layne Jackson

Layne Jackson, acting chief of the Regina fire department. (CBC)

Acting Regina Fire Chief Layne Jackson said Friday that the fire department worked closely with Cando on the plan.

"Our role is consulting and reviewing their emergency response plan," Jackson said, adding the fire department gave extra attention to "notification procedures" by the company.

City officials, including Regina's mayor, expressed concern about how information about the roll-away had been handled.

Mayor Michael Fougere said he first learned about it from news reports two days after it happened.

While Cando has resumed work at the refinery, a Transportation Safety Board investigation is ongoing.

"Cando is providing its full co-operation to the (TSB) review of the incident," the company said.