Lac-Megantic Mayor Lobbying Washington for More Rail Safety

Collette Roy-Laroche is in town–she is the mayor of Lac-Megantic, a Quebec town that lost 47 people last July when a runaway train derailed and tank cars carrying crude oil exploded into a giant fireball.

In a March 11 briefing she said: “It’s the mayors, like me, who end up living with the life-shattering consequences of such a terrible tragedy.” …In addition to the massive number of fatalities, Lac-Megantic has to rebuild its destroyed town center, a process that’s already cost $400 million. About 50 buildings burned down, Roy-Laroche said, and “a river of burning oil” seeped into sewers and basements.The fire burned with such intensity that it rendered many of the surviving homes and businesses uninhabitable. The remains of five of the 47 victims have not been found.”

She and other Canadian and American mayors with the Cross-Border Municipal Coalition for Railway Safety are pushing the U.S. Secretary of Transportation, the administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration, and members of Congress to address inadequate railway safety regulations that put citizens of Canada and America at great risk.

We at DCSR thank her and the other mayors for their action, and encourage our mayor in DC to address the issue of rail safety with similar energy and urgency.

Read more about their visit here: