The Lac-Mégantic Disaster
Where Does the Buck Stop?
This study examines the Lac-Mégantic disaster, and points the finger at corporate negligence and regulatory failure as root causes of the tragedy. According to the study, the evidence to date suggests a flawed regulatory system, dangerous cost-cutting corporate behavior, and responsibility extending to the highest levels of corporate management and government policy-making. The study also points to several other flaws in the regulatory system, and highlights some remaining questions in the wake of the accident.
The people of Lac-Mégantic entrusted government to take reasonable measures to ensure their safety. Their trust was betrayed. They deserve to know the truth behind the corporate negligence and regulatory failure for which they paid such a heavy price.
Guidelines that could have prevented this disaster:
>> Speed restrictions
>> Performing en-route inspections
>> Communication protocols
>> Accuracy of reports and handling emergencies
>> Deal with situations when an employee judges himself unfit for work if called unexpectedly
>> Ensure the train operator has taken health and fitness training and a recent medical exam
>> Provide such lone operators with “specific training” and furnish proof of successful completion to Transport Canada upon request.
Politicians have deflected criticism of government’s cost cutting and deregulation of the railway industry contributed to the disaster.
We need to blame the government for deregulations – for relying on an industry to regulate itself.
And the media too. We need to blame the media, the so-called “journalists”. They have attempted to misdirect their readers as to the causes of the Lac-Mégantic rail disaster. Canada’s mainstream newspapers have any serious examination of the corporate and government drive to deregulate industry.
The news media was created to be a watchdog for the people, but has that changed. It has become the lapdog of the government!
Firefighters continue to water smoldering rubble Sunday, July 7, 2013 in Lac Megantic, Quebec. A runaway train derailed Saturday igniting tanker cars carrying crude oil.
The downtown core lays in ruins as firefighters continue to water smoldering rubble Sunday, July 7, 2013 in Lac Megantic, Quebec. A runaway train derailed Saturday igniting tanker cars carrying crude oil.
The remains of tanker cars lie burnt out in the downtown core Sunday, July 7, 2013, in Lac Megantic, Quebec. A runaway train derailed Saturday igniting tanker cars carrying crude oil and devastated the town.
An aerial view of a fire in the town of Lac-Megantic is seen from a Sûreté du Québec helicopter Saturday, July 6, 2014 following a train derailment the sparked several explosions in Lac Megantic, Quebec.
Smoke rises from railway cars that were carrying crude oil after derailing in downtown Lac Megantic, Quebec, Canada, Saturday, July 6, 2013.