News / Edmonton

City says safety 'not at risk' after signal error sent LRT down wrong track

The incident happened early Saturday morning near NAIT.

A signalling issue sent an LRT onto the wrong track near Kingsway station Saturday.

Kevin Tuong / For Metro

A signalling issue sent an LRT onto the wrong track near Kingsway station Saturday.

Days after a signalling issue sent an LRT train down the wrong track near NAIT, city administration told city council that safety is not an issue.

At about 6:30 a.m. Saturday morning, a signal sent a driver onto the wrong track when leaving Kingsway station. Another train was already on the track, so the first driver stopped.

Early that afternoon a signal again tried to send a train onto the wrong track, but the control centre was monitoring the issue by that point and pulled the train back.

“The safety of the patrons is not at risk,” City Manager Linda Cochrane said.

The route is part of the Metro line, which has been plagued with signalling issues for years.

Cochrane said the city has contacted Rail Safety Consulting (RSC), the company that has made sure the appropriate safety mechanisms are in place.

“RSC has signed off on the safety but that isn’t guaranteeing that there won’t be breakdowns in the line,” she said.

Coun. Mike Nickel asked administration about a separate incident on July 9, when the crossing arms failed to come down at an intersection the LRT was about to pass through.

The driver of a vehicle had to hit their brakes hard to avoid a collision, he said.

Administration asked council to allow them to get back to them about that incident, although they said that safety was not an issue as the driver of the train would have known what to do.

“If we ever thought the safety of passengers was compromised we would stop the train,” Cochrane said.

Council has asked for a detailed report to be submitted to them on Dec. 5, when council will meet privately with adminstration. They have also asked a representative from RSC to attend.

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