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Rail transportation safety investigation R20W0025

The TSB has completed this investigation. The report was published on 7 June 2024.

Table of contents

Main-track train derailment

Canadian Pacific Railway Company
Freight train 516-380
Mile 43.66, Sutherland Subdivision
Guernsey, Saskatchewan

View final report

The occurrence

On 06 February 2020, Canadian Pacific Railway Company freight train 516-380, a unit train carrying petroleum crude oil (UN1267, Class 3, Packing Group I), was proceeding eastward on the Sutherland Subdivision at about 44 mph when a train-initiated emergency brake application occurred near Guernsey, Saskatchewan. A subsequent inspection determined that 32 DOT-117J100-W tank cars had derailed near the Bloomfield Road public crossing at Mile 43.66, destroying about 300 feet of track. Thirty of the derailed cars released about 1.75 million L of crude oil. A fire ensued. Approximately 85 residents of Guernsey were evacuated, and Highway 16 was closed. There were no injuries.

Safety communications


Rail Safety Advisory 617-02-20: Modifying key train speed based on various train risk profiles


Rail Safety Advisory 617-03/20: Enhanced track standards for key routes

Media materials

News releases


Rail failure led to 2020 train derailment and crude oil fire near Guernsey, Saskatchewan
Read the news release

Deployment notice


TSB deploys a team of investigators to a train derailment near Guernsey, Saskatchewan

Winnipeg, Manitoba, 6 February 2020 – The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) is deploying a team of investigators to the site of a derailment involving a Canadian Pacific Railway train near Guernsey, Saskatchewan. The TSB will gather information and assess the occurrence.

Investigation information

Map showing the location of the occurrence


Photo of Ken Miller

Ken Miller joined the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) in 2002 and has been a senior investigator with the Rail and Pipeline Investigations Branch since 2004. During that time he has participated in more than 50 investigations while also performing the duties of standards and performance specialist.

Before joining the TSB, Mr. Miller worked for consulting companies in the resource sector providing geological expertise. In this capacity, he was responsible for the development, management and successful completion of exploration projects.

Mr. Miller’s education credentials include a Bachelor of Science degree in Geological Sciences from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, and a Masters of Business Administration degree from the University of Toronto, Ontario.


  Download high-resolution photos from the TSB Flickr page.

Class of investigation

This is a class 3 investigation. These investigations analyze a small number of safety issues, and may result in recommendations. Class 3 investigations are generally completed within 450 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.