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Deadly Vancouver Island logging train derailment caused by faulty equipment

Ellen Cools

November 8, 2018
By Ellen Cools


Nov. 8, 2018 – On April 20, 2017, a logging train derailed on the Englewood Railway in Woss on Vancouver Island, killing three and injuring two.

A WorkSafeBC report found the derailment was caused by multiple mechanical errors and defective equipment. A faulty coupler (the tool that connects rail cars) caused eleven train cars loaded with logs to detach and roll downhill, the Vancouver Sun reports. Instead of diverting the cars, a derail mechanism, which was attached to old rail ties that had rotted, came free when the wheels hit.

Consequently, the rail cars rolled 500 metres into a speeder (a railway maintenance car) and backhoe, where five men were working. They continued down the line for 1.5 kilometres until derailing, burying the men under the logs. Roland Gaudet, Jacob Galeazzi and Clement Retie died, and two others were seriously injured.

According to WorkSafeBC, Western Forest Products, the company working on the railway, failed to ensure the health and safety of all workers on the rail line.

Read the full Vancouver Sun article here.