What Happened in Last Summer’s Oil Train Disaster in Quebec That Killed 47

By Roger Annis, Truthout | News Analysis  –

lac megantic sattelite shot

(Screenshot: Google Satellite)

Details of the events leading to last July’s oil train disaster in Lac Mégantic, Quebec, have been made public for the first time. They reinforce an existing portrait of the accident as a perfect storm of corporate malfeasance.

The information comes from a freedom of information request by the Montreal English-language daily The Gazette and the French daily Journal de Montréal. The two newspapers obtained a 29-page document prepared by Quebec provincial police in its application for a search warrant of the offices of Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway (MMA) several weeks following the disaster.

On the night of July 5-6, 2013, an un-crewed runaway crude oil train derailed and exploded in the center of the town of Lac Mégantic, killing 47 people.

A heavily redacted version of the police document was given up in February of this year. The Gazette‘s Monique Beaudin reports in a June 16 article on the content of the full document. We learn in the uncensored version (French language):

• An insufficient number of handbrakes – seven – were applied by the train engineer, Thomas Harding, when he stationed the 73-wagon train late on July 5 and retired for the night in a local motel. An expert report prepared for the SQ (the police) estimates that hand brakes should have been applied to at least 15 wagons and to the five locomotives. Company guidelines called for handbrakes on nine wagons in that length of train.

Red more…..  http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/24534-revealed-what-happened-the-night-of-the-oil-train-disaster-in-lac-megantic-quebec