Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Northbound freight service resumes after derailment

  • Print
Merv Tweed, president of Omnitrax Canada

BORIS MINKEVICH / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS FILES Enlarge Image

Merv Tweed, president of Omnitrax Canada Photo Store

It won’t be a train in vain.

A freight train left Thompson for Churchill around 3 p.m., carrying 28 cars filled with supplies destined for northern communities following last week's train derailment, Omnitrax Canada said Wednesday.

Omnitrax said it completed repairs to the Hudson Bay Railway line, and the line was "cleared in accordance with Transport Canada rules respecting track safety."

"Starting today and moving forward we are advising our customers and friends that our trains are moving again. Following thorough inspections by our experienced track inspectors, and the successful runs of two separate test trains, we are very pleased to welcome customers back onto the line to serve the communities of the North," stated Merv Tweed, president of Omnitrax Canada, in a press release.

On June 2, 13 cars carrying grain derailed just south of Churchill. Bad weather stalled repairs to the track and also prompted the cancellation of several Via trains carrying tourists.

Unstable permafrost has traditionally made the rail line prone to long delays and derailments. It’s one reason environmental groups balk at a plan by Omntrax to ship crude oil to the port of Churchill.

Since Omnitrax took over the railway in 1997, the company says it has spent $110 million on improvements, in addition to the $40 million invested by the provincial and federal governments.

A Via Rail representative said passenger rail service to Churchill is not yet available and didn’t know when it will resume.

Passenger service is currently available as far north as Gillam, the representative said. Via Rail posted a message on its website indicating it is not offering "alternate transportation" between Gillam and Churchill at this time.

The lack of passenger rail service to Churchill is proving frustrating to some.

In an emailed complaint sent to the Free Press, a Churchill resident wrote: "It is extremely frustrating to not know what is happening. It feels like we are hostages in our own town. Imagine what it would feel like to have the Perimeter Highway locked. Oh and for the record it costs between $1,300 and $2,200 to fly down to Winnipeg so that is not a reasonable option for a lot of people."

History

Updated on Wednesday, June 11, 2014 at 7:35 PM CDT: Adds passenger rail service details, adds photo.

7:52 PM: Adds comment from reader on passenger rail service to Churchill.

8:02 PM: Adds more details about passenger rail service.

8:08 PM: Changes headline.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

On the job with sea lion researchers

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • PHIL HOSSACK / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS 060710 The full moon rises above the prairie south of Winnipeg Monday evening.
  • Water lilys are reflected in the pond at the Leo Mol Sculpture Garden Tuesday afternoon. Standup photo. Sept 11,  2012 (Ruth Bonneville/Winnipeg Free Press)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Would you visit Dalnavert Museum if it reopened?

View Results

Ads by Google