[Marxism] Fwd: [railroadworkersunited] CANADA: Transport Minister Backs Mandatory Inward-facing Cameras on Locomotives

Richard Sprout sproutr at upstate.edu
Tue May 23 12:13:43 MDT 2017

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Begin forwarded message:

> From: "Railroad Workers United" <railroadworkersunited at gmail.com>
> Date: May 23, 2017 at 11:59:49 AM EDT
> To: "Railroad WorkersUnited" <RailroadWorkersUnited at googlegroups.com>
> Subject: [railroadworkersunited] CANADA: Transport Minister Backs
Mandatory Inward-facing Cameras on Locomotives
> NOTE: See the response of the Teamster Canada Rail Conference - the
union of the operating crafts - at the tail end of the article.
> Canada recommends mandatory inward-facing cameras on
locomotivesndustry Newsletter
> OTTAWA, Ontario — Canadian Transport Minister Marc Garneau filed
legislation on Monday that would mandate the installation of voice and
video recorders in locomotive cabs.
> The recommendation is a response to the February 2012 fatal wreck of a
Toronto-bound VIA Rail Canada train in Burlington, Ont. Train 92 was
going four times the posted track speed when it derailed and overturned
while crossing from one main to another. Three VIA crew members were
killed in the crash, and more than 40 passengers were injured.
> Rail safety would be enhanced if locomotive voice and video recorder
data could be collected and used for proactive safety management and
accident investigation, Canada’s Transportation Safety Board said in a
report released in September 2016.
> Canadian Pacific, Canadian National, and VIA Rail all cheered the
measure, which also has the backing of the Railway Association of
> "Minister Garneau has shown tremendous political leadership with
today's announcement on inward-facing cameras, and I thank him for his
commitment to safety," CP CEO Keith Creel said in a statement. "Having
the ability to use this technology in a proactive manner will allow us
to prevent incidents and improve rail safety — further protecting the
public, our employees, and the goods we transport for our customers."
> “Nothing is more important than safety, and CN strongly supports the
advancement of inward facing cameras,” CN CEO Luc Jobin said in a
statement. “Regulators on both sides of the border recognize the value
of these devices. We believe this technology is a powerful and important
tool in the investigative process to get to a better understanding of
causation, which will lead to improved safety practices — something we
all want.”
> “Safety is a cornerstone of everything we do at VIA Rail. Accordingly,
we welcome any effort that promotes safe rail operations,” VIA
Representative Mariam Diaby says.
> The proposed amendments to the Rail Safety Act would limit the purpose
for which the data is used in order to address employees’ privacy
concerns, Garneau said. Voice and video data would be used by
Transportation Safety Board accident investigators. Railroads also could
randomly sample the data to identify safety issues, to determine the
cause of non-reportable accidents, and to address safety threats.
Transport Canada also could access the data as part of safety studies
and to ensure compliance.
> If passed as expected, the measure would take effect in 2018.
> Creel has advocated for inward-facing cameras for years, but only if
the technology can be used in a proactive way to shape behaviors. 
> "By implementing [cameras] as a preventative, proactive,
behaviour-changing tool we will promote safe behaviours and improve
safety," Creel says. "We recognize the need to use this technology in a
way that is respectful of our employees, and are committed to working
closely with government, regulators, and the unions to do so." 
> Earlier this year, CP launched an awareness campaign that highlights
the safety benefits of the proactive use of inward-facing cameras. CP
uses inward-facing cameras in 50 of its locomotives in the U.S. The
technology is also being used successfully by others in the U.S., with
studies showing a 40-percent reduction in collisions per million miles
> While Teamsters Canada has supported limited uthe union is demanding an explanation of how workers' rights will be
protected, Doug Finnson, president of the Teamsters Canada Rail
Conference, says in a statement released late Tuesday.
> "Marc Garneau's proposal is an unprecedented violation of Canadians'
privacy," he adds. "How can he possibly think that workers aren't
getting the short end of the stick?"
> Contrary to background information provided by Transport Canada,
unions were not consulted prior to the announcement, according to
Finnson. Suggesting there is consensus on the issue is wrong and
unethical, he says. 
> Teamsters Canada, which represents train and engine crews, asserts
access to recordings should be limited to government accident
investigators. The proposed amendments to the Rail Safety Act would
remove the legislative barrier to railroads accessing the recordings.
> "Today was a complete surprise and a total disappointment," Finnson
says. "For a government that can't stop talking about the middle class,
they sure love listening to corporate lobbyists." — William P. Diven
contributed to this report.
> -- 
> Railroad Workers United
> Solidarity -- Unity -- Democracy
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