Toronto, February 18, 2020
The following message was issued by the Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association (CIFFA) on Monday, February 18, 2020:
- A blockade established on February 15 on CN's main line in Vaughan, Ont. (Greater Toronto) was removed on February 16.
- Train service resumed on the CN north line serving the Port of Prince Rupert on February 13.
- CN continues to recover in the west from earlier blockades in New Hazelton, B.C. and Headingley, Man.
- The blockade in Tyendinaga, Ont., is ongoing and CN's network east of Belleville, Ont., remains shut down.
- The blockade in Vancouver has been removed.
- A new blockade has been set up south of Winnipeg, affecting some rail traffic moving south into the United States.
- The blockade on CP's main line south of Montreal is impacting train movements between Montreal and Albany, N.Y. Traffic is building in and around St. Luc with no practical re-routing alternatives. CP has issued an embargo, effective February 17, to control the flow of shipments over this part of network. It affects all shipments routing over the interchanges of St. Jeans, Que., Albany, N.Y.; Whitehall, N.Y.; Schenectady, N.Y.; and Bellows Falls. N.Y."
"CIFFA, Other Supply Chain Associations Urge Government to End Rail Blockades
On February 14, CIFFA joined the Association of Canadian Port Authorities, the Freight Management Association of Canada and the Shipping Federation of Canada in sending a letter to Minister of Transport Marc Garneau to "urge the government to do everything in its power to find a long-term resolution" to the CN rail blockades."
"Industry Warns of Empty Shelves as CN Rail Blockade Continues
Sectors from retail to oil and gas are calling on governments to resolve the dispute with anti-pipeline protesters as the rail blockade threatens shortages of groceries, propane, drinking water and other goods.
Canadian Propane Association CEO Nathalie St-Pierre says wholesalers in the Maritimes have already begun to ration distribution, while truck line-ups for the fuel in Sarnia, Ont., are now up to 10 hours long as water treatment plants, hospitals, farmers and rural residents await more shipments.
Drinking water could also fall into short supply if chlorine for water treatment stays off the tracks, according to chemical distribution trade group Responsible Distribution Canada.
"If something doesn't happen now, we're going to start seeing municipalities in Ontario beginning to have boil-water advisories going out," said president Cathy Campbell.
Read more in an article from CityNews."
"Trudeau Confers with Cabinet Ministers as Rail Blockades Continue
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was in talks over the weekend with federal cabinet ministers, as protesters opposed to a pipeline project in British Columbia continued to halt train service across parts of the country.
Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller said during an appearance on CTV's "Question Period" on Sunday that he believes a peaceful resolution can be reached, as he pointed to the Oka and Ipperwash crises as reasons why dialogue is preferable over police intervention.
Miller said the economy is suffering as a result of the blockades, but the government's response is a test of Canada's ability to find peaceful resolutions to such disputes.
The PMO announced that Trudeau was to convene the Incident Response Group on Monday. The group was described upon its inception in 2018 as a "dedicated, emergency committee that will convene in the event of a national crisis or during incidents elsewhere that have major implications for Canada."
Read more in an article from Canadian Shipper."
We are continuing to monitor this situation and will advise accordingly.
For more information, please call David Lychek, Manager – Ocean & Air Services at (905) 882-4880, ext. 1207.