GFM Network News


Both railways are ordering new locomotives, but they will take several months for delivery.

Railway pace ahead of last year

Both major rail companies were on track for good performance coming into 2019, but poor weather has derailed their progress

Grain shipments by rail are leaps and bounds ahead of last year — but there’s still a long way to go. “I think both railways have really stepped up the volume, but we haven’t been without our issues,” said Mark Hemmes, president of Quorum Corporation, the agency tasked with monitoring grain movement by rail. “If […] Read more

Nearly half of all railway-related deaths and injuries result from accidents at crossings.

Upgrades slated for a host of crossings

Seventeen rail crossings will see upgrades in the coming year in locations across the province

The federal government is spending $3.3 million to improve rail safety at 18 locations in Alberta. The funds will be used on three types of projects: Install flashing lights, bells, and gates at crossings. Install advanced train detection and crossing control system. build fencing and other barriers to discourage trespassing on railway properties. Almost half […] Read more


CP says its grain movement to Vancouver is its best-ever last month

Canadian Pacific Rail says its western grain movements in October were its best ever despite dealing with a weather-delayed harvest. A record 15,865 carloads were moved to West Coast ports in October, besting the previous record of 15,449 carloads in March 2016. Total Western Canadian grain movements in the month climbed 3.9 per cent over […] Read more

Latest rail bill highlights the need for change, says farm leader

The $1.3-billion tab for moving last year’s crop shows 
‘there will never be an open market,’ says Alberta Wheat chair

The final tally is in and Prairie farmers spent more than $1.3 billion on rail transportation in the last crop year. The average bill was $33.69 a tonne for the 2013-14 crop year (a drop of 30 cents per tonne from the previous year) and the total cost was almost exactly what’s allowed under federal […] Read more


Once Ottawa threatened the railways with fines, grain cars started showing up at elevators.

PR fumbles and effective lobbying = grain-movement order

Five to Remember: While the railways were defending their performance, farmers were successfully urging Ottawa to crack the whip

The year dawned with CN and CP Rail insisting they were doing an excellent job moving grain, and weren’t to blame for plugged elevators and empty freighters anchored on the West Coast. It proved to be a spectacularly ineffective bit of PR. Everyone knew moving the all-time-record harvest of 2013 would be a challenge, and […] Read more

Alberta farm leader says rail system fix is on track

Ordering the railways to move more grain has grabbed the spotlight, 
but Kent Erickson says newly enacted legislation will bring long-term gains

New federal rail legislation is the first major step in building a sustainable and reliable rail transportation system, says the chair of the Alberta Wheat Commission. But in the meantime, extending an order-in-council that penalizes the railways if they fail to move a million tonnes of grain a week is the best short-term fix, said […] Read more