CN enhances rail and wheel flaw defect program

Written by Jenifer Nunez, assistant editor

Canadian National started a special program to acquire additional monitoring equipment to enhance its technological base for early detection of defects.


“We’re stepping up our inspection and detection capabilities. We’ve had a major push in recent years to increase the number and quality of track, wheel and bearings inspections that help prevent accidents. This has positioned us well in the rail industry. With this program, we intend to go further when it comes to safe rail operations,” said Jim Vena, CN executive vice president and chief operating officer.

At a cost of CA$10 million (US$9.4 million), the program will include the acquisition/installation of 30 new wayside equipment system units that detect hot bearings, hot wheels and dragging equipment; a new track geometry test car to monitor the position, curvature and alignment of track; an optical track inspection system that uses imaging to identify defects; more than 30 new brittle bar detectors that identify and flag derailed equipment to train crews and controlled signaling on certain key rail sidings in its most heavily used corridors to alert crews and dispatchers to broken rail incidents.

“The application of new detection equipment and modern safety technologies will improve the coverage of our network,” said Vena. “The technology we’re deploying will keep us ahead of the industry in this field and strengthen our solid safety performance even further. Advanced technology, rigorous safety process and the continued strengthening of our safety culture are the key foundations of our unwavering commitment to safety.”


Categories: Ballast, Ties, Rail, Class 1