Train Whistle Cessation
What is the City doing to reduce Train Whistling?
The City of New Westminster is continuously working alongside Provincial and Federal levels of government to make whistle cessation happen. As railways are federally regulated, the City cannot restrict or regulate train whistles. However, the Federal and Provincial Governments have established processes the City can pursue whereby rail companies are directed to cease blowing whistles at specified locations. The City of New Westminster is currently pursuing these measures and will keep residents and businesses informed as the process unfolds.
Whistle Cessation Process
Step 1: Interest for whistling cessation is expressed.
Step 2: Municipality consults with the railway company.
Step 3: Municipality issues notifications and public notice.
Step 4: Municipality and railway assess the crossing(s) against the prescribed requirements in the Grade Crossings Regulations and Standards.
Step 5: Municipality and railway agree that the crossing(s) meets the prescribed requirements of the Grade Crossings Regulations and Standards.
Step 5A (optional): Municipality and railway request a final decision from Transport Canada.
Step 6: Municipality passes a resolution declaring that it agrees that whistles should not be used in that area, thereby prohibiting train whistling.
Step 7: The railway company notifies Transport Canada and informs the municipality within 30 days that it has arranged to have whistling ceased at the crossing(s).
Step 8: Municipality and railway share the responsibility for monitoring and maintaining the conditions that support the cessation of train whistling at the crossing(s).
When will cessation be obtained at all crossings?
The City of New Westminster is committed to achieving cessation city-wide, but it will take a number of years and assistance from other levels of government in order for this to occur. As part of the process, the City has undertaken safety audits at all crossings; however, each crossing comes with its own set of challenges and safety requirements in order to obtain cessation. As a result, cessation will be obtained as the resources and upgrades to the crossings are undertaken.
Crossing Information and Current status
New Westminster has a total of 22 railway crossings in the city; 12 on the mainland and 10 in Queensborough. The City is currently focusing on 13 public crossings to obtain whistle cessation.