GATINEAU, QC, Jan. 14, 2019 (Press Release) -The Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) today announced that it has initiated an investigation into possible freight rail service issues in the Vancouver area.
Under provisions added to the Canada Transportation Act in May 2018, the CTA can, of its own motion, launch such an investigation, provided the Minister of Transport agrees. The Minister's authorization was requested and provided Friday.
The CTA concluded that an investigation would be appropriate based on information received from shipper associations and other parties.
The matters covered by the investigation will include whether there is evidence of discriminatory treatment of certain commodities, how freight rail permits and/or embargoes are being used, and whether railway companies operating in the Vancouver area are fulfilling their service obligations.
A public hearing will be held in Vancouver at the end of January to give railway companies and shipper groups an opportunity to provide evidence in response to questions from the Agency.
"One of the CTA's responsibilities is to help ensure an efficient, smoothly-running national rail system. This is the first time we're using a new authority to launch investigations on our own motion to advance this mandate. The public hearing will give parties an opportunity to submit evidence as the CTA considers whether railway companies operating in the Vancouver area are fulfilling their service obligations and, if they aren't, what remedies should be ordered. We’ll get the investigation done as quickly as possible, but we’ll take the time required to gather all the relevant facts.”
- Scott Streiner, Chair and CEO of the Canadian Transportation Agency
About the CTA
The Canadian Transportation Agency is an independent, quasi-judicial tribunal and regulator which has, with respect to all matters necessary for the exercise of its jurisdiction, all the powers of a superior court. The CTA has three core mandates: helping to keep the national transportation system running efficiently and smoothly, protecting the fundamental right of persons with disabilities to accessible transportation services, and providing consumer protection for air passengers. To help advance these mandates, the CTA makes and enforces ground rules that establish the rights and responsibilities of transportation service providers and users and level the playing field among competitors, resolves disputes using a range of tools from facilitation and mediation to arbitration and adjudication, and ensures that transportation providers and users are aware of their rights and responsibilities and how the CTA can help them.