CANADA: On January 29 the Canadian Transportation Agency held its first public hearing for an investigation into ‘possible freight rail service issues’ in the Vancouver area.

The investigation is looking into whether there is evidence of discriminatory treatment of certain commodities, how freight rail permits and/or embargoes to manage traffic flow are being used, and whether railways are fulfilling their service obligations.

‘This is the first time we’re using a new authority to launch investigations on our own motion’, said CTA Chair Scott Streiner when the investigation was announced. ‘The public hearing will give parties an opportunity to submit evidence as the CTA considers whether railway companies operating in the Vancouver area are fulfilling their service obligations and, if they aren’t, what remedies should be ordered.’

Responding to the announcement, Canadian Pacific said it was ‘proud’ of its performance in Vancouver, was not aware of any formal complaints and ‘takes great exception’ to being included in the investigation.