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OTTAWA, ON – The Administrator of the Fund for Railway Accidents Involving Designated Goods (the Fund) announced today that it is reaching a major milestone: five years of successful preparedness development. In the event of a major crude-by-rail accident, the Fund would protect Canadians from bearing the cost of damages.
The Fund came into effect in 2016 as Canadians demanded stronger liability and compensation following the tragic 2013 Lac-Mégantic derailment. This accident resulted in over 4,300 claims and approximately $1.5 billion in damages. Since then, Canada has strengthened its liability and compensation regime, by having the Fund ready to receive, investigate, assess and pay admissible claims should another crude-by-rail accident occur. Compensation by the Fund starts after railway companies have paid damages up to the amount required by law.
“Despite no railway accidents having triggered the Fund’s intervention yet, we have been implementing an action plan to facilitate access to justice and compensation for victims should it happen, while monitoring railway accidents”, said the Administrator, Anne Legars. “We have assembled a great team, which includes our new director, Dan Di Tota, to prepare for claims management deployment and develop a clear and swift process to support claimants, while remaining fair for the payers.”
Based on the polluter-pays principle, the Fund has so far received close to $87M from crude oil shippers through a levy, a per-tonne fee, collected and remitted by the first federally-regulated railway to carry the crude oil in Canada. Now collecting $1.80 per tonne, between one and two million dollars on average have been accruing to the Fund each month.
To mark the 5th year of preparedness development, the Fund will soon launch its programming, which will include hosting a virtual event in the Fall 2021. Constant efforts are being made to raise awareness and engage with stakeholders.
“We want the Fund to be relevant and effective for all types of claims and claimants, including Indigenous claimants, so we invite Canadians to mark our 5th anniversary by participating in our upcoming events which will be announced soon”, said Anne Legars.
For information on specific activities and programs being offered, stakeholders are encouraged to check the website regularly and follow us on social media.
Crude-by-Rail Accidents: The Fund Event Survey
The Administrator of the Fund for Railway Accidents Involving Designated Goods (FRAIDG/the Fund) recognizes its five-year anniversary and we want to hear from you!
The Fund compensates victims of damages caused by a major crude-by-rail accident. Compensation starts after federally regulated railway companies have paid damages up to the amount required by law, and for which they must have insurance coverage. The Fund was created as a response following the Lac-Mégantic tragedy. Now, in the event of a railway accident involving crude oil, the Fund protects Canadians from bearing the cost of damages.
In recognition of its 5th anniversary, the Fund will be hosting a 5th Anniversary Event. Due to the uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Fund is planning a virtual event (or a series of virtual events) to be hosted in Fall 2021. By completing the “Crude-by-Rail Accidents” survey, your input will help shape both the 5th Anniversary Event, as well future events hosted by the Fund.
This survey will be available until May 26, 2021.
Follow the link below to get started:
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2019-2020 Annual Report
The 2019-2020 Annual Report of the Fund for Railway Accidents Involving Designated Goods is now available, click here to access it.