SWIFT CURRENT, Sask. – An investigation has concluded that a split rail ultimately led to the derailment of a freight train carrying potash in southwestern Saskatchewan last fall.
A Transportation Safety Board report says the crack had been there for some time and the rail broke when the Canadian Pacific train passed over it on Oct. 3.
The train was heading west from Swift Current when 37 cars derailed near the Maple Creek subdivision.
Many of the derailed cars released potash, but no dangerous goods were involved and no one was hurt.
The safety board says the tracks in the area had been tested 11 times in the two years before the derailment – most recently last August – and no defects were reported.
It says the crew did not observe any track or operating irregularities.
Potash consists of minerals containing potassium and is used as an agricultural fertilizer.