FEDERAL TRANSPORT MINISTER MUST PROTECT RAIL SAFETY DURING ONR LOCKOUT
Concerns have been raised that the Wynne Liberal Government's lockout of the ONR is undermining the certified safety checks of ONTC's rail services, some of which are under federal jurisdiction. Charlie Angus is asking the Federal Transport Minister to protect northern Ontario's rail safety by enforcing compliance and increasing safety checks for all Federal safety procedures, regulations, and certifications during the lockout. In a letter written to Federal Transportation Minister Marc Garneau, Angus writes:
“Despite being a provincial corporation, there are aspects of the ONTC’s rail service that fall under federal jurisdiction. Given that some of these trains carry large loads of acidic materials we have to ensure that safety standards are being met especially as these trains travel through the heart of populated communities. If falls within your mandate to ensure that trains travelling along lines under federal jurisdiction are fully compliant with railway Freight Car Inspection and Safety Rules.”
Angus says the lock out of ONTC mechanics is part of a larger attack by the Wynne government on the public transportation and communication network of Northern Ontario. He says given the close relationship between the Trudeau Liberals and the Wynne government, federal Liberal MPs could help put pressure to end this unnecessary lock-out.
"The importance of maintaining safe rail service is something that should bring us all together in Northern Ontario regardless of our political stripe. The ONTC plays a significant role in our region. We need to speak up as northerners to tell the Wynne government to stop her austerity-driven agenda that is stripping northerners of a credible transportation network.”
Angus will be speaking at the Unity rally in North Bay on Saturday.