New measures on rail infrastructure


New measures on rail infrastructure

  • New measures to address extreme weather and climate change impacts on rail infrastructure


July 7, 2022

Global Korean Post


The Government of Canada is taking action to further improve the safety and security of Canada’s rail system, especially in light of the impacts of climate change and severe weather on railway operations.


On July 6, the Minister of Transport, Omar Alghabra, announced two new rail safety measures. One focuses on railway-related fire prevention, while the other improves the resiliency of Canada’s railway infrastructure against climate change impacts, such as flooding, landslides, and fire risks.


To help prevent fires on railway property and in nearby communities, Transport Canada is introducing these measures as part of broader federal government efforts on climate change adaptation by creating new rules for the fire season (April 1 to October 31). These new rules require railway companies to:


Reduce train speeds and conduct additional track inspections when temperatures are high to reduce the risk of a derailment caused by track conditions;

-Inspect locomotive exhaust systems more frequently to ensure they are free of any deposits that could pose a fire risk; and

-Implement a fire risk reduction plan.


The fire risk reduction plan is robust and requires companies to monitor fire risk levels, manage vegetation, reduce activities that could spark fires, and respond to detected fires. Companies must also engage local governments and Indigenous communities on their plans. Similar to other critical sectors of Canada’s economy, risk monitoring and preventative measures are important steps towards a comprehensive national adaptation strategy.


Transport Canada is also announcing the Rail Climate Change Adaptation Program. Its objective is to support research, development, and implementation of innovative technologies, tools, and approaches to better understand and address the increasing risks and impacts of climate change on Canada’s rail sector.


The Rail Climate Change Adaptation Program will provide up to $2.2M in contribution funding to Canadian railways to cost-share research. Project submissions from eligible railways will be accepted until September 28, 2022.