Minister of Transport marks the launch of Rail Safety Week 2023

News release

September 18, 2023             Ottawa                Transport Canada

The Government of Canada continues to take measures to ensure Canada’s rail transportation system is safe and secure. Over the past 10 years, Transport Canada has significantly strengthened its oversight program and continues to take steps to strengthen rail safety in Canada.

Today, the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, highlighted the launch of the 20th annual Rail Safety Week. This national event is vital in raising public awareness of safety around railway property and trains. Together, we can work to avoid rail-related incidents and protect Canadians who work and live near railways.

The Government of Canada wants to share some tips to help keep everyone safe around railway tracks:

  • Always expect a train at a railway crossing; stop, look both ways and listen.
  • Obey all railway warning signs and signals. Look for traffic signals that indicate a railway crossing.
  • Respect private railway property. Trespassing is unsafe and unlawful.
  • If you need support, please reach out to seek assistance. Call 9-1-1 or 1 (888) 353-2273.

Over the last year, Transport Canada has continued to make Canada’s railways safer. Some examples include:

  • Approving new rules to help prevent fires on railway property and in nearby communities;
  • Improving capacity for local and Indigenous communities, organizations, and other orders of governments to engage on rail safety through the Community Participation Funding Program – Rail Safety component and the Program to Enhance Rail Safety Engagement; and
  • Advancing regulatory initiatives, including: proposing amendments to the Railway Safety Act, initiating the review of the Railway Safety Management System Regulations, 2015, and implementing Duty and Rest Period Rules for Railway Operating Employees.

This Rail Safety Week, we thank all Canadian rail workers who work tirelessly to promote rail safety across North America.


“It’s important that we continue to put into place measures that reduce the risk of serious accidents and protect those living in communities along the tracks. On this 20th anniversary of Rail Safety Week. I want to remind everyone that it is dangerous and illegal to trespass onto railway property and interfere with the safe operations of the railway system. This year’s theme is, “Stop Track Tragedies", so let’s all do our part to put safety first.”

The Honourable Pablo Rodriguez
Minister of Transport

Quick facts

  • Transport Canada is committed to keeping Canadians safe by improving rail safety and increasing public awareness and confidence in Canada’s rail transportation system.

  • Among many activities, Transport Canada actively monitors railway companies through audits and safety inspections to verify compliance with rules and regulations, and takes action when violations occur.

  • Operation Lifesaver is a partnership initiative of the Railway Association of Canada and Transport Canada and works with the railway industry, police, unions, organizations and communities. It aims to save lives by educating Canadians about the hazards surrounding railway property and trains.

Associated links


Laura Scaffidi
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez
Minister of Transport, Ottawa

Media Relations
Transport Canada, Ottawa

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