SAINT JOHN, N.B. — Irving Oil Commercial GP was issued a $4 million fine on October 26 after it pled guilty to 34 counts for offences under the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act in Saint John Provincial Court.
The fine comprises a financial penalty of $400,320 and $3.6 million for the implementation of research programs to improve the safety of the transportation of dangerous goods in Canada. In addition, Irving Oil was ordered to submit a corrective measures plan and follow up with Transport Canada (TC), according to a Public Proseution Service of Canada statement.
Following the train derailment in Lac Mégantic, Quebec on July 6, 2013, a joint investigation by TC and the RCMP found that Irving Oil did not comply with all applicable safety requirements by failing to determine the classification of dangerous goods for the crude oil it transported by train. The shipping documents on board the trains were erroneous, and the company also failed to train its employees in the transportation of dangerous goods adequately. These offenses occurred over an eight-month period from November 2012 to July 2013, during which approximately 14,000 cars transported crude oil for Irving Oil.
Minister of Transport Marc Garneau says in a statement, following Irving Oil’s conviction, that his thoughts continue to go out to the community of Lac-Mégantic and all those affected by this tragedy. “Today, we close another chapter in this tragic event through a settlement that we have reached with Irving Oil.”
Garneau adds that following the Lac-Mégantic incident, TC undertook a regulatory investigation, with the assistance of the RCMP, to determine whether a violation to the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act had occurred.
“Rail safety remains my top priority. Transport Canada continues to closely monitor the safety of rail operations and the system, as well as the safe transportation of dangerous goods by all modes of transport across Canada,” Garneau says.