Inside Politics

For the record: Politicians respond to the Ottawa bus crash

Note: This post will be updated throughout the day, so check back for new additions.

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Prime Minister Stephen Harper:

It is a tragic morning in the Nation's Capital, as a devastating accident between a bus and train has caused injury and death. On behalf of all Canadians, Laureen and I extend our thoughts and prayers to all those affected by this tragedy. I would like to commend all of the first responders who acted quickly to assist those in need.

New Democrat Leader Tom Mulcair:

Our heartfelt thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the terrible accident this morning between a VIA rail train and an OC Transpo commuter bus in Ottawa.

We are deeply saddened and offer our condolences to the families and communities who have lost loved ones in this tragedy.

Let us acknowledge the hard work under difficult and emotional circumstances of the emergency personnel involved.

Liberal Party Leader Justin Trudeau and Ottawa South MP David McGuinty (joint):

The Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, Justin Trudeau, made the following statement today on the train and bus collision in Ottawa:

"I was terribly saddened to hear of the fatal train and bus collision in Ottawa this morning. Our thoughts and prayers are with all those families and friends who have been affected by this devastating accident.

These next few hours are of vital importance, and it is reassuring to see the swift assistance of our emergency response personnel. We are standing with all those affected by this awful collision."

Liberal MP for Ottawa South, David McGuinty, continued:

"I was deeply sorry to hear of this terrible train and bus collision in south-west Ottawa. My deepest sympathies go out to all those who have been impacted by this accident and their loved ones. Your community is here to support you as we grapple with this tragic event

Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson:

As most Ottawa residents know by now, there has been a tragic collision between an OC Transpo bus and a VIA Rail train which occurred at around 8:50 this morning.

Emergency personnel are on the scene and have reported some fatalities as well as a number of persons injured.

We join with all Members of Council in expressing our deepest condolences to all those who are affected by this terrible tragedy. Our thoughts and prayers are with those who have lost loved ones, have been injured or have loved ones who have been injured.

A Family Reunification Centre has been opened by the Ottawa Police Service at the Nepean Sportsplex. Families looking for loved ones may also contact 311.

The City's Emergency Operations Centre has been activated and all available resources are being deployed to ensure that care is being provided to all persons involved at the scene.

We have asked that City flags be immediately placed at half mast to signal the City of Ottawa's sadness for the tragic loss of life.

A number of agencies will be looking into what transpired this morning, including the Ottawa Police, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada and the Coroner, but our focus as a City today is to care for those families who have lost a loved one as well as ensure we provide the best possible care for those who have been injured and affected by the accident.

Residents of Ottawa and City staff will be kept informed as developments unfold.

Transport Minister Lisa Raitt:

On behalf of Transport Canada, I would like to convey my thoughts and prayers to all those affected by this accident.
Foreign Affairs Minister and MP for Ottawa West-Nepean John Baird:

It is with great sadness that I learned of the horrific accident this morning involving an OC Transpo Bus and a VIA Rail train. My thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of the victims, and those injured in this terrible tragedy.

I am extremely proud of the resiliency of the people of Ottawa and how we face adversity and tragedy together as a community. I have no doubt that today, our city will mourn those we've lost, and support those in need as we move forward as a city, and as a community.

As a local Member of Parliament, and as a life-long resident of our community, I will be in close contact with local authorities and city officials in the coming days to determine how we can support those families in need.

Minister of State for Democratic Reform Pierre Poilievre and MP for Nepean Carleton:
It was with profound sadness that I learned of the tragic accident that took place this morning in Ottawa. I offer my deepest condolences to the people whose lives have been affected by this tragedy and the loss of life that has shocked us all. I would also like to wish a speedy recovery to the people injured in this tragic event. What has happened is truly devastating for our community. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Ontario Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak:
I was shocked and saddened to learn about this morning's tragic collision near Ottawa. On behalf of the Ontario PC Party, I want to express sincere condolences to the families and loved ones of all those who were injured and lost their lives this morning. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families affected by this tragic event. I also want to thank all the police, fire, and emergency personnel working to render assistance and treat the injured.

Nepean-Carleton MPP Lisa MacLeod:

I rise with sadness and grief. My constituents today in Nepean-Carleton have witnessed a very tragic accident where a Via Rail car hit a OC Transpo double-decker bus. At the moment, we are aware that there have been five fatalities. I know I speak on behalf of everybody here to give love, support and grief to my constituents, those who have lost loved ones.

My community is the largest riding in the city of Ottawa. It's one of the fastest growing in Canada, as well. Many people on that bus are commuters to downtown Ottawa. Many of them are probably federal civil servants and students who commute from our bedroom community into the downtown.

I want to let my constituents know that I've already spoken with our neighbouring MPP Madeleine Meilleur, who is the community and safety minister, who has assured me that the government of Ontario will do what it takes to support them. I've spoken to our municipal councillor Jan Harder who has assured me that the city of Ottawa will do what it takes, and hot lines are being set up at the moment. I have spoken with our federal member of Parliament, Pierre Poilievre, who is a cabinet minister. He has assured me that we will continue to keep the community updated.

Speaker, I'm sure you will understand that I will take leave from this place today to be with my community. I want to thank all of my colleagues who are going to be with us in prayer, and I want to thank all of those leaders in our community who work for OC Transpo and for other city services and our police and our fire for being there for response.

Thank you for indulging me, and I want to thank my colleagues for this opportunity to rise on this solemn occasion.

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