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Smithers mayor says more talks needed on rail safety

Smithers mayor Taylor Bachrach says Friday’s train derailment in Decker Lake is another example of why it is important to be looking closely at rail safety now.

“What we are going to be seeing is quite a considerable increase in rail traffic associated with the port and with that comes increased risk for communities that the railroad passes through.”

He says communities along the Northern line have expressed concerns about the ability to respond to a rail disaster.

Currently the closest crews capable of handling a large-scale rail accident are in Edmonton and Vancouver.

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Bachrach says Smithers council is continuing to talk with CN about what can be put in place to manage an accident in more remote areas like the Bulkley Valley.

Friday’s collision with a logging truck derailed 22 rail cars and two engines and temporarily suspended rail activity along the line.

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