Safety Advisory: Railway derails

Safety Advisory

Safety Advisory: Railway derails

April 7, 2020

Safety Advisory

Reference Number:

SA-RW 2017-01

This Safety Advisory is being issued to provincially-regulated railways and is subject to the Railway Act, Railway Safety Act, and associated regulations.

Date of Revision: March 10, 2020



Derail – a safety device designed to prevent unauthorized movement of railway equipment.



The following advisory is to notify provincially regulated railways of the potential risks associated with the improper installation, maintenance, and application of railway derails.


Recommended actions

Technical Safety BC recommends that each railway utilizing derails in their operation perform an inspection of all derails to ensure that the following requirements are being met:

  • That all track components are compliant with the Rules Respecting Track Safety;
  • That the derail meets and is compliant with:
    • manufacturer specifications
    • Canadian Rail Operating Rules (CROR) Rule 104.5 Derails
    • Rules Respecting Track Safety Part II, Subpart E (II); and
  • That the derail selected is suitable for the railway’s operation.



The proper installation and maintenance of derails is imperative to safe railway operations. If your railway is unclear on the proper installation, maintenance, and/or type of derail to be installed, please contact Technical Safety BC immediately for clarification.


Arne Vigen
Technical Leader, Railway
Technical Safety BC

For additional information, please contact Technical Safety BC’s railway program administration at 778 396 2063 or email