2021 train derailment near Edmundston blamed on failed railcar component

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The Transportation Safety Board (TSB) is blaming the derailment of a freight train near Edmundston in 2021 on a failed railcar component.

A release states 22 railcars of a CN train derailed at around 8:30 p.m. on January 26th when a cross key failed and caused a coupler to fall into the path of another railcar.

Investigators say the failed cross key had developed fatigue cracks over its four years of service prior to the incident, and determined there was no prescribed interval to inspect the part on the particular type of railcar on that train.

Following the incident, CN found that 408 railcars with the same manufacturer, draft gear design and manufacturing timeframe had a defective cross key.

The TSB says the component has been redesigned, and updated cross keys are currently undergoing service trials.

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