May 25, 2020
A VIA RAIL MONTRÉAL MAINTENANCE CENTRE EMPLOYEE TESTS POSITIVE FOR COVID-19
MONTRÉAL, May 25, 2020 – VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) as been informed that one of its employees working at the Montréal Maintenance Centre tested positive for COVID-19 on Sunday, May 24. This employee has not been at work since Thursday, May 21, at which time he showed no symptoms.
As the health and safety of our employees is our number one priority, we immediately took the appropriate measures:
- The employees that had been in direct contact with their colleague have been in self-isolation since May 22. Since, they have been informed of the situation and were asked to remain in self-isolation and monitor their symptoms for the next 14 days.
- In accordance with the guidelines from the Public Health Agency of Canada, all the necessary steps of our cleaning protocol have been deployed.
- A thorough disinfection of the working area has been done to ensure employees can continue working safely.
- Our mitigation measures are fully operational and ensure that regular sanitization of common areas is performed in our maintenance centres by our cleaning staff using all the disinfectants products approved by Health Canada that have proven to be effective against COVID-19.
In the context of the work carried out by this worker, and the safety measures that person has taken by respecting the appropriate physical distancing and wearing the required personal protective equipment, the risks of possible contamination remain minimal.
We remain in close communication with our employee and are providing all the support he needs to recover in the best possible conditions. Our thoughts are with him and his family during this difficult time.
VIA Rail continues to adjust its operations and deploys a strict protocol of sanitary measures on board its trains, in its stations, maintenance centres and call centres in response to the pandemic and in order to minimize the spread of COVID-19. We have limited the number of bookable seats aboard our trains in order to provide passengers physical distancing space when travelling.
Furthermore, we constantly remind our passengers and employees of the importance of following the recommendations of the public health authorities, to stay at home, avoid non-essential travel, practice physical distancing as much as possible, and to rigorously follow good hygiene practices (wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, cough or sneeze into a tissue or the bend of their arm, avoid touching their eyes, nose or mouth without first washing their hands).
In order to limit the risks of propagation of COVID-19, VIA Rail recommends to all its passengers to wear a non-medical mask or face covering that covers the nose and the mouth when travelling on its trains and when it is impossible to respect a distance of 2 metres with others.
Passengers will be denied boarding our trains if they are experiencing symptoms similar to a cold or flu (fever, cough, difficulty breathing) or if they have been denied boarding for travel in the last 14 days due to medical reasons related to COVID-19.
We continue to monitor the developments of COVID-19 and we remain in close contact with public health agencies and the federal and provincial governments.
The most recent updates are available on our website.
About VIA Rail
As Canada’s national rail passenger service, VIA Rail (viarail.ca) and all its employees are mandated to provide safe, efficient and economical passenger transportation service, in both official languages of our country. VIA Rail operates intercity, regional and transcontinental trains linking over 400 communities across Canada, and about 180 more communities through intermodal partnerships, and safely transported over 5 million passengers in 2019. The Corporation has been awarded five Safety Awards and three Environment Awards by the Railway Association of Canada since 2007. Visit the “About VIA Rail” section at https://www.viarail.ca/en/about-via-rail.