Rail in White Rock
The City of White Rock has a railway on the waterfront. This single track rail line is operated by Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway (BNSF) and used by BNSF and Amtrak passenger trains. The line operates 24 hours a day.
Rail in the Day
Between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m., all trains are ordered to sound repeated short engine whistles regardless of whether or not animals or persons are on the track. This was an Order from Transport Canada on 31 July 2014.
Rail at Night
Between the hours of 8:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m., a short warning signal is required by each northbound train at the crossing at Finlay Street and for each southbound train at the Bay Street crossing. The engine bell is required to ring continuously between all crossings through White Rock.
Train Horn for White Rock Promenade
North and South Bound
|6:00am to 8:00pm||L-L-S-L||L-L-S-L||L-L-S-L||L-L-S-L||L-L-S-L|
|8:00pm to 6:00am||S-S + Bell||S-S + Bell|
L=Long train horn
S=Short train horn
The trains are required to whistle at each grade crossing per Transport Canada's Rail Safety Procedure for Train Whistling at Public Grade Crossings. Included on this website is information on the procedure for eliminating whistling at grade crossings (whistle cessation). In order for the City to apply for whistle cessation at the grade crossings they must meet the 2014 Transport Canada Grade Crossing Regulations for each of these crossings. Currently all of the City’s grade crossings do not meet this regulation and need to be reconstructed to include flashing lights, bells, gate and be fully accessible prior to the City applying to eliminate the whistling.
The City has applied to Transport Canada for the funding of the seven grade crossings in the City of White Rock and has received approval to reconstruct four of the crossings prior to the summer of 2018. The construction of Finlay Street, Bay Street, Ash Street and Balsam Street are currently being designed and construction is expected to begin fall 2017. We are hopeful, the City will be successful in obtaining further grant for the remaining crossing in 2018. Once all the crossings meet the Grade Crossing Regulations the City will apply to stop the whistling at each of the grade crossings in the City of White Rock.
Transport Canada Contact Information
820 - 800 Burrard Street
Vancouver, B.C. V6Z 2J8
General Information: 1.866.995.9737
Transport Canada Rail Services
225-625 Agnes Street
New Westminster, B.C. V3M 5Y4
General Information: 604.666.0011 RailSafety@tc.gc.ca
BNSF Railway Public Notice - Fall 2017 Vegetation Management Program
In order to maintain the safe and efficient functioning of train operations, BNSF Railway will be conducting their Fall 2017 vegetation management program on the tracks and ballast areas within the City of White Rock between October 3-6, 2017 weather permitting. Treatment Notices will be posted at all public and road accesses advising of the date and time of treatments. Precautions to minimize exposure to herbicides and contact information is contained on the Treatment Notices. For further information about this, please contact: Chris Bryan, Ferrovai Services, LLC, Railroad Operations-Vegetation at 303-842-6564 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Council Direction on Rail Relocation
At the Council meeting on 8 September 2014, Council approved the following resolution regarding rail relocation;
THAT Council directs staff to initiate the process and application for the relocation of the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway (BNSF) rails from the waterfront of the City of White Rock in accordance with the Railway Relocation and Crossing Act, and work on this matter with the City of Surrey and the Corporation of Delta where it is applicable to do so.
Community Dialogue Session on Rail Safety and Dangerous Goods - July 2014
In July 2014 the City hosted a moderated Community Dialogue Session regarding rail safety and dangerous goods.
The following presentations were made at the Community Dialogue Session:
- A Short History of the Railway in White Rock (1891 - 2001) by Hugh Ellenwood, Archives Manager, White Rock Museum & Archives
- Lessons from Lac-Megantic - Risk in the Transportation of Dangerous Goods in Canada by Mary-Jane Bennett, Transportation Consultant