Cheakamus River derailment

The Cheakamus River derailment occurred on August 5, 2005, when nine cars that were from a Canadian National Railway freight train derailed and crashed into the Cheakamus River in British Columbia. The cars contained approximately 40,000 litres of caustic soda (sodium hydroxide), which entered the river, killing more than 500,000 fish from 10 different species, including chinook salmon, coho salmon, pink salmon, and rainbow trout, both freshwater and ocean-dwelling.[1]

On November 5, 2005, federal transport minister, Jean Lapierre, ordered Canadian National to limit the number of cars of its conventional trains travelling in the area of the derailment between Squamish and Clinton to 80 cars, as a result of the derailment; the train involved had 144 cars.[2]

The derailment cost CN at least $7 million.[3]


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