On August 3, 2005, a Canadian National (CN) freight train proceeding westward from Edmonton, Alberta, to Vancouver, British Columbia, derailed 43 cars near Wabamun, Alberta. Forty-three rail cars derailed, spilling Bunker C oil (heavy fuel oil) as well as toxic pole treating oil (PTO) into the lake. Approximately 700 000 litres of Bunker C and 88 000 litres of PTO were spilled, and within minutes of the derailment, much of the heavy oil had reached the lake and was spreading across the surface.
QM Environmental's Emergency Response division was contacted to assist CN Rail in the containment and cleanup. QM was on site within hours to provide an external supply of crew, equipment and materials for emergency response, as well as subsequent hazardous materials abatement and soil remediation support.
QM initiated a command system for shoreline operations and identified the need for an overall management team that would coordinate land/water operations and develop a comprehensive plan to deal with delicate environmental issues.
Professional SCAT advisors were contacted and East Coast Response Corp. (ECRC) was brought in. QM command staff worked closely with CN Rail and ECRC to coordinate clean-up operations.