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Final report on Burlington Via Rail derailment out Tuesday

The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) will issue its final report next week into its investigation of the 2012 Via Rail derailment in Burlington that killed three employees.

The TSB said it will hold a news conference at 9:10 a.m. next Tuesday in Burlington to discuss its findings.

Via train 92, which left St. Catharines for Toronto on Feb. 26, 2012, switched tracks abruptly at Aldershot around 3:30 p.m. that day and collided with a building, causing all six passenger cars to derail in Burlington.

Three Via crew members in the first cab died, and 44 passengers and one Via worker were injured.

In February, the TSB recommended that locomotives have in-cab voice recorders.

The TSB said “voice recordings allow investigators to understand the environment in which crews operated and the decisions they made leading up to an accident.

“The lack of this information in rail investigations deprives the TSB of a key tool it needs to help make Canadians safer.”

Days after the Burlington derailment, the TSB’s lead investigator Tom Griffith said that excess speed caused the crash. The train was travelling at around 67 mph or 108 km/h, which was more than four times the authorized speed for switching tracks.

Griffith said the train’s black box — which records speed and brake pressure among other things — showed the brakes were not used before the crash. He also said the track signals appeared to be working.