Japan Shinkansen and China Railway High-speed (CRH) Rail Yards

Sometimes it is nice to see what other countries have and dream that one day Canada will have modern high speed trains.
 China Railway High-speed (CRH)

Japan Shinkansen Trains

VIA Rail and the High Frequency Rail Myth - 25% Reduced Trip Times

Will the Canadian government spend $4 billion resulting in the same trip times between Toronto and Montreal as in 1973?

One of the biggest unsubstantiated statements by VIA Rail is their proposed high frequency rail line will reduce trip times by 25%.

What data have VIA Rail released to show how this reduced travel time will be accomplished?  The answer is simple. VIA Rail has not even released any data to the public to support that statement or even the exact routing of the line.

Current VIA trains tips between Toronto and Montreal is  about 5hrs and 5hrs 17min on the main line.

Even if VIA Rail could obtain a 20% reduction in trip times it would result in travel times like we had in 1973 around 4hours.(and  this percentage reduction would take a leap of faith).

Travelling along the old Ontario-Quebec (CP) Rail line has many level crossings, a winding route, travelling through small communities and the reduced speed to enter and leave Montreal and Toronto.

In 1973, the CN Turbo train took 3hrs 59min between the same two cities on the main line VIA Rail is now running on. Here is the CN video to demonstrate this fact.

How can the government spend $4 billion where the result of spending that money will be train trip times that we had in 1973? VIA Rail's High Frequency Rail plan continues Canada's reputation as having one of the slowest, outdated, and inefficient passenger rail systems in the modern world.

Bill C-49 Passed Into Law - Allows the Videotaping of Locomotive Crews

Bill C-49 will help rail accident investigators

When a tragic rail accident happens, it is critical for investigators to be able to gather all the facts.  Then they determine what preventable actions can be taken in the future to prevent a reoccurence.

Remember the tragic accident of VIA Rail in Burlington 2012 where three engineers train were killed. An advanced signal was missed by the three engineers and  the train was travelling more than four times the authorized speed. Video evidence from the cab would have helped investigators determine just exactly how this happened.

Now Bill C-49 has been passed into Canadian law. Bill C-49 is an Act to amend the Canada Transportation Act and other Acts respecting transportation and to make related and consequential amendments to other Acts. The regulations to suport the act will follow.

Relating to the ability to allow videotaping of the train crew, the act amends the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act to allow the use or communication of an on-board recording, as defined in subsection 28(1) of that Act, if that use or communication is expressly authorized under the Aeronautics Act, the National Energy Board Act, the Railway Safety Act or the Canada Shipping Act, 2001.

Here is a link to the actual BILL-C49.

Collective Against Empty Trains Fights VIA Rail Canada High Fares

There is a new group in Montreal waging war on the ridiculous high price fares at VIA Rail Canada. The Collective Against Empty Trains has started a petition and website in english and french.

They are fighting against what many Canadians have known for years, VIA Rail's high fares keep people from taking the train. The following photo from the Empty Trains website clearly demonstrates the effect of VIA's high prices between Quebec and Montreal.

Photo taken aboard the Quebec City-Montreal Train 29 on April 23rd 2018 showing two "cars" (#5 and #6) which stayed entirely empty during the whole trip. Tickets for this train were going for 69$ (one way) at the time of its departure.
The Collective states that one way Quebec City-Montreal fares should always be available until all seats sell out in the 20$ range. Such a price would most certainly fill a lot of the empty train seats that are a common sight today. This fare pricing makes sense but VIA Rail's pricing results in the empty seats as shown above.

We will do our part to promote this group. We all need to sign their petition. The Collective Against Empty Trains spokesperson is Greg Sadetsky and he can be contacted on through their website https://emptytrains.com , https://trainsvides.com or by email info(at)emptytrains.com. #emptytrains

Québec et Montréal scellent le sort du TGF

Le Devoir - Marie-Michèle Sioui à Québec5 mai 2018 Montréal
English follows

Valérie Plante et Régis Labeaume ont scellé vendredi leur appui à un projet de train à grande fréquence (TGF), qui pourrait relier les deux villes qu’ils dirigent, Québec et Montréal.

Dans un discours devant la Chambre de commerce de Québec, la mairesse de Montréal a souligné l’importance de permettre aux projets de TGF et de Réseau électrique métropolitain (REM) de cohabiter dans le tunnel Mont-Royal. Les responsables du REM ont déjà confirmé qu’ils entretenaient des discussions avec VIA Rail — responsable du projet de TGF — à ce sujet.

« J’ai adoré la position de la mairesse de Montréal sur l’accès au tunnel du mont Royal. C’est central, le noeud est là », s’est réjoui le maire de Québec, Régis Labeaume. « C’est ça qui peut faire la différence entre un projet et pas de projet. Alors, je remercie Valérie de l’avoir fait. […] Pour les gens de Québec, c’est merveilleux », a-t-il ajouté.

Le monorail

Ni Régis Labeaume ni Valérie Plante n’ont discuté récemment du projet de monorail devant lier leurs deux villes.

Le premier ministre, Philippe Couillard, l’a présenté en novembre comme un « projet phare pour le nouveau Québec ». Puis il l’a discrètement enterré, devant la grogne qu’il a provoquée chez les élus de la Mauricie, qui y ont vu une menace à la concrétisation du TGF, dont le projet est dans les cartons depuis plusieurs années.