A landslide has blocked the CN rail line from Terrace to Kitimat. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan)

A landslide has blocked the CN rail line from Terrace to Kitimat. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan)

Landslide blocks CN rail line between Terrace and Kitimat

Customers using trucks and other means of transportation

CN’s rail line from Terrace to Kitimat remains blocked following a landslide that took place Nov. 26, 2020.

Approximately 550 feet of track was covered by trees, debris and clay, the company has said.

“CN’s team of responders is evaluating the situation and no decision has been made at this point as to the repairs,” it added.

With the line out of commission, CN said it has been assisting customers with alternate forms of transportation.

“The safety of our employees, contractors, and members of the community remains our top priority,” it added.

The Rio Tinto aluminum smelter at Kitimat is one of CN’s customers who has had to rely on other transportation methods.

“The material transported by truck includes materials needed for operations such as salt, lumber, fluoride and silicone,” said Rio Tinto official Simon Letendre.

“We are already using ships and barges as part of our normal operations. We have just increased the volume of material being shipped by sea. The material is going to the Port of Vancouver,” he added.

Rio Tinto has not been given a timeline by CN as to how long the line will be blocked.

Provincial experts have been providing advice and information to CN.

“The [Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development] has provided geotechnical specialists familiar with the region to assist CN Rail and we will continue to support the ongoing work CN Rail is doing,” indicated a statement from that ministry.