BC transit studies, Road Safety Strategy 2015, Hon. Denis Lebel, Hon. Steven Fletcher

Transport Action Canada
Hotline 1117, May 20, 2011

Transport Action, Electrify GO transit

"Lower the fares, increase the number of stops, and Toronto could be on its way to a European-style service such as the Berlin S-Bahn or London’s Overground. The latter project “is supposed to form a complete circle around the city of London … on subway-like frequencies,” said Greg Gormick, who wrote the CTC report, No Little Plan: Electrifying GO Transit," Tess Kalinowski reported for the Toronto Star on May 15.

"The CTC study, funded by rail advocacy group Transport Action and the CAW, also comes at a time when the man (Mike Sullivan) who has led the charge on electrification is heading to Ottawa as an NDP MP," the Toronto Star reported.

BC Transit studies, Transport Action

"BC Transit is embarking on a number of transit studies for communities outside of Vancouver, such as Victoria, Abbotsford and Fraser Valley communities, Kelowna, and Kamloops. Transit Future  as BC Transit calls it, asks for public input for these different regions," Matthew Buchanan president of Transport Action BC reported on May 17.

"More specifically, on the Abbotsford & Mission service area of BC Transit, the City of Abbotsford, and the City of Mission have embarked on a 25 year transit strategy. This strategy is based on the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure’s Fraser Valley Transit Study.

"Many of the initiatives involved in this report such as creating a transit connection between Chilliwack and Abbotsford, the important link between Abbotsford into Langley are not being discussed at all. While presently you can take the 21 Aldergrove Connection and link to the 502 Aldergrove/Surrey Central Station service, it is ignoring a serious issue.

People in Abbotsford cannot effectively access employment in Langley Township, Langley City, and Surrey unless they use a car. Thanks to Ken Wuschke for developing this post. For more information see his blog ," Matthew Buchanan president of Transport Action BC reported.

Bridge tolls return to Montreal on A25, Transport Action

"More than 28,000 motorists have already received the special transponders that will allow them to automatically pay the bridge's tolls when it opens to car traffic on Friday, May 20, two months ahead of schedule," Andy Riga reported for the Montreal Gazette on May 14.

Environmental groups tried but failed to get an injunction against the planned extension of Highway 25, saying it would increase traffic and pollution in Montreal. Transit users' group Transport 2000 unsuccessfully tried to convince Quebec to add a reserved lane for buses and carpooling.

Hon. Denis Lebel, Minister of transport, infrastructure and communities Roberval -- Lac-Saint-Jean

New Transport Minister Denis Lebel's first order of business will be to meet with representatives of the country's largest railways and their customers to discuss legislation currently being drafted that would see the Canadian Transportation Agency become arbitrator in their dispute," Jameson Berkow
and Yadullah Hussain reported for  the Financial Post on May 19.

"One of only six Conservatives to be elected in Quebec, Denis Lebel of the Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean riding has been appointed Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities and keeps his post as Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec. Lebel was the mayor of Roberval between 2000 and 2007 and has served on boards for several Quebec industry groups and associations, including Comite de transport de la region du Saguenay as well as Infrastructure Quebec," Truck News reported on May 18.

Hon. Steven Fletcher, Minister of state for transport

"Charleswood-St.James-Assiniboia MP Steven Fletcher moves from minister of state for democratic reform to minister of state for transport. Fletcher said he'd known "for awhile" about the move and looks forward to it. He was already in his new office Wednesday afternoon preparing to learn about his new role. It will mainly involve overseeing Canada's 17 Crown corporations including Via Rail, the Royal Canadian Mint and Canada Post. "It's going to be good,"  Mia Rabson reported for the Winnipeg Free Press on May 18, 2011.

Others !
Jim Flaherty, finance
Vic Toews, public safety
Gerry Ritz, agriculture
Christian Paradis, industry
Peter Kent, environment
Lisa Raitt, labour
Steven Blaney, international trade and minister for Asia Pacific gateway
Joe Oliver, natural resources

Rail 2030 : Tirer parti du transport ferroviaire de voyageurs et de marchandises au Canada pour améliorer l'économie et la société

L'intérêt croissant suscité par l'élaboration d'un document de travail qui positionnerait le transport ferroviaire de voyageurs et de marchandises dans 20 ans a donné lieu à un projet qui s'intitule Rail 2030. Le but de cette initiative est d'explorer les cadres conceptuels d'éventuels scénarios futurs et de formuler des recommandations, en partenariat avec le gouvernement et d'autres intervenants, sur des questions communes à tous, ce qui profitera à l'économie et à la société du Canada.

Railway Association of Canada, Rail 2030

"We are developing a bold vision for 21st century transportation that communicates the role rail can play in improving the supply chain, and advancing Canada's economic development and competitiveness," said RAC President and Chief Executive Officer Cliff Mackay. “Industry, government and academic researchers are actively examining new approaches and seeking solutions to address transportation challenges, such as infrastructure renewal, congestion, rising energy costs, environmental concerns and mobility,” Progressive Railroading reported on May 18.

US: $41 billion yearly losses due to crash-related deaths

"Motor vehicle crash-related deaths, the leading killer of children, teens and young adults, cost an estimated $41 billion in medical and work loss expenses in a year, a study showed on Wednesday," Reuters reported on May 11.

Road safety, no data, no trucks, no accountability

On May 15 Canadians were invited to: “Rethink Road Safety to help us achieve our Vision of making Canada’s roads the safest in the world!"

The Transport Canada CCMTA initiative is excellent in some ways but in the end does a disservice to the cause of "road safety". Canada's Road Safety Strategy 2015 abandons the principle of timely data and does not address commercial vehicles.

In 2007 the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators was told the "to accept accountability" for trucking safety. Four years later and there is no plan for commercial vehicles in new national strategy. The Canadian Trucking Alliance reported in February on a big safety study but the 281-page good, but flawed, report remains secret.

The data lag issue identified ten years ago at a top priority will not be addressed.  The most recent official statistics for Canada are for 2008.

Most recent Ontario statistics are 2007.

The initiative praises a science-based, open, timely and collaborative approach which it hasn't yet applied to its biggest safety initiative of the last decade. Four years after the 13-hour day, 77 hour week truck driving limits were implemented there is no information about the impact of the regulations. The hours are much longer than US hours. Trucking safety is the only road safety measure where the US outperforms Canada. Background document on National Safety Code Standard 9 also known as the "hours of service" regulations.

Road safety in Canada needs a rethink. But this is not it.

Further Readings: Estimates of the Full Cost of Transportation in Canada