Railway Safety Inspector Didn’t Have Authority to Demand Risk Assessment

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Railroad officials and Transport Canada officials met to discuss the railroad’s proposed construction of a siding track. At the meeting, a railway safety inspector asked for a copy of the project’s risk assessment. Railroad officials showed the government officials the assessment but wouldn’t give them a copy. The railroad was charged with violating the Railway Safety Act for refusing to comply with an inspector’s request. The court dismissed the charge. The inspector was authorized to act only as to operations and equipment. But the proposed siding not only wasn’t being “operated,” railroad officials told the government officials that it wasn’t going to be built as originally planned anyway. So the inspector didn’t have the authority to demand the risk assessment, concluded the court [R. v. Canadian Pacific Railway Co., [2010] ABPC 130 (CanLII), April 16, 2010].