NDP Wins Case: Hudson Bay Railroad Ordered to Fix Rail Line to Churchill

June 15, 2018

After a year of uncertainty and hardship, the Manitoba NDP has received a decision which orders Hudson Bay Railway Company to fix the rail line and restore service to Churchill starting July 3, 2018.

“This is the first order forcing HBR and OmniTRAX to repair the line that any level of government has received,” said Manitoba NDP Leader Wab Kinew. “I’m proud to say that when the Premier and the provincial Government refused to act, we stood up for the people of Churchill”.

The railway line was washed out more than a year ago, closing the only land access between Churchill and surrounding communities and the rest of Manitoba. The closure of the rail line along with the port has caused severe and ongoing economic losses to the town, including significant job losses. Families have been struggling to afford the rising costs of food, household items and building materials.

Wab Kinew’s Manitoba NDP filed a complaint with the Canadian Transportation Agency against the Hudson Bay Railroad (HBR) and OmniTRAX claiming it was in violation of its level of service obligations under the Canada Transportation Act. The NDP submitted an application seeking an order that HBR/OmniTRAX repair the line and restore service to Churchill.

On June 13th, 2018 the Canadian Transportation Agency ruled that the HBR/OmniTRAX is in breach of its level of service obligations and ordered the company to begin repairing the railway line by July 3, 2018 and restore service as expeditiously as possible.

“When the Pallister government said there was nothing a provincial entity could do, our NDP Caucus took action,” said Kinew. “We have always stood up for the people of the North and will continue to do so until the rail line is repaired and restored to Northern ownership."