The Teamsters Canada Rail Conference (TCRC), a trade union which represents more than 9,000 Canadian railway workers, recently confirmed that their membership have voted 95.3% in favor of strike action.

The strike could start by the end of this month if ongoing negotiations are not successful in the next couple of weeks, as the mandatory 21-day cooling off period started on the 30th April.

The industrial action is currently planned due to rising safety concerns over rail companies proposed changes to rest time provisions. However, the next round of talks are planned to begin from May 13th, with the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services (FMCS) overseeing proceedings.

Should the unions proceed with strike action, then disruption to ocean freight and transport services will be likely for services to and from Canada and certain parts of North America.

Canadian container freight movements rely heavily on rail freight movements within the country, therefore services to and from inland points would be affected and congestion would undoubtedly build at Canadian ports.

Canadian rail freight is also important for cross border services in and out of the USA Northeast and Northwest, along with a significant amount of volume in and out of the US Midwest.

As a leading provider of ocean freight and fulfilment services in North America, Westbound are following developments closely and are very much hoping that strike action can be averted.

If you have any questions regarding the above, then Westbound are here to help. So, please do not hesitate to contact us.