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Collision between Ottawa LRT trains in storage yard won’t delay relaunch: memo

An OC Transpo Light rail transit (LRT) train arrives at the Tunney's Pasture station in Ottawa, Ontario on Saturday, Sept. 12, 2020. File photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Lars Hagberg

A collision Monday morning between two light-rail vehicles in Ottawa’s maintenance and storage facility caused some damage but won’t delay plans to restore partial service on the Confederation Line later this week, according to a memo from the city’s chief safety officer.

Brandon Richards wrote to city council late Monday to say that two light-rail vehicles had collided while one train car was towing another earlier that day.

He didn’t say why the two trains crashed, but said there was “some damage” to the windshield glass, wipers and exterior panels on both vehicles. One of the train’s couplers was also damaged.

No injuries have been tied to the collision.

Read more: Ottawa LRT trains pulled from testing as confidence in Rideau Transit Group questioned

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Operations were paused at the yard as the city called the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB). Investigators with Canada’s transportation watchdog finished their assessment with no follow-up expected, per the memo.

Richards said the incident will have “no impact” on the plan to restore service on the Confederation Line before the end of the week.

Mayor Jim Watson said Friday that the city was still on track to get trains running in the first two weeks of November, but said a firm date will be announced “a day or two” before service resumes.

The Confederation Line has been shut down since Sept. 19 when a train derailed with 12 passengers on board near Tremblay Station, damaging the vehicle and surrounding infrastructure.

The TSB issued a letter last week indicating poor maintenance protocols and loosened bolts on the train were to blame for the latest derailment.

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