Rail transportation safety investigation R21T0007

Updated in March 2021 : This investigation is in the report phase.

Table of contents

Main-track train derailment

Goderich-Exeter Railway train
Mile 45.9, Goderich Subdivision
Goderich, Ontario

The occurrence

On , a Goderich-Exeter Railway assignment train ran uncontrolled westward, before derailing off the end of the Southpier Terminals track, at Mile 45.9 on the Goderich Subdivision. During the uncontrolled movement, the train struck an unoccupied tractor-trailer, an occupied pickup truck, and a small structure. Units RLK 4095 and GEXR 2073 as well as 4 hopper cars that did not contain dangerous goods derailed and remained upright. There were no injuries and no leaks. A TSB investigator deployed to the accident site from the Richmond Hill TSB office.

Media materials

Deployment notice


TSB deployed investigator to train derailment in Goderich, Ontario

Richmond Hill, Ontario, 2 February 2021 — The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) has deployed an investigator following yesterday’s derailment of a Goderich-Exeter Railway train in Goderich, Ontario. The TSB is gathering information and assessing the occurrence.

Investigation information

Map showing the location of the occurrence


Photo of Jerry Berriault

Mr. Berriault has been with the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) since 2007. He is a senior regional investigator, Central Region, based out of the Winnipeg, Manitoba, office.

Among other responsibilities, he has been the Investigator-in-charge of eight rail accident investigations and served as a team member in a number of other investigations throughout Canada, providing operational and technical expertise.

Before joining the TSB, Mr. Berriault held numerous positions with Canadian National Railway (CN) from 1980 until 2007, including superintendent of operations. While at CN, he gained extensive knowledge of all aspects of train operations, including both the mechanical and engineering functions.

Class of investigation

This is a class 4 investigation. These investigations are limited in scope, and while the final reports may contain limited analysis, they do not contain findings or recommendations. Class 4 investigations are generally completed within 220 days. For more information, see the Policy on Occurrence Classification.

TSB investigation process

There are 3 phases to a TSB investigation

  1. Field phase: a team of investigators examines the occurrence site and wreckage, interviews witnesses and collects pertinent information.
  2. Examination and analysis phase: the TSB reviews pertinent records, tests components of the wreckage in the lab, determines the sequence of events and identifies safety deficiencies. When safety deficiencies are suspected or confirmed, the TSB advises the appropriate authority without waiting until publication of the final report.
  3. Report phase: a confidential draft report is approved by the Board and sent to persons and corporations who are directly concerned by the report. They then have the opportunity to dispute or correct information they believe to be incorrect. The Board considers all representations before approving the final report, which is subsequently released to the public.

For more information, see our Investigation process page.

The TSB is an independent agency that investigates air, marine, pipeline, and rail transportation occurrences. Its sole aim is the advancement of transportation safety. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or determine civil or criminal liability.

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