Northern Alberta: Train Derailment : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Ottawa Citizen

Tampered switch believed cause of train derailment in northern Alberta

GRANDE PRAIRIE, Alta. (CP) - A tampered switching device is believed responsible for a 15 car freight train derailment in northwestern Alberta, police said Thursday.

RCMP said the crash occurred in a train yard in Grande Prairie, heavily damaging several cars and the track itself. Several youths were spotted in the area at the time of the derailment but no arrests have been made.

A 13-year-old Nova Scotia boy is to appear in court Wednesday facing two charges in connection with a

passenger train derailment last month.

The boy, who cannot be identified, is charged with committing mischief to endanger life, as well as criminal negligence causing bodily harm.

Twenty-four people were injured when the Via Rail passenger train, carrying 109 passengers and 14 crew, went off the tracks.

The 14-car train, en route to Montreal from Halifax, derailed in the rustic community of Stewiacke, N.S., where several people miraculously escaped injury as it plowed into a farm supply store.

Police arrested the youth and two others after witnesses said they saw three youths leaving the scene shortly before the train derailed. Just one person was charged.

RCMP have centred their investigation on a railway switch and lock that was allegedly tampered with before the cars were violently wrenched off the track.

-- Rachel Gibson (, May 04, 2001

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