As the COVID-19 crisis continues to disrupt its passenger services from coast to coast, VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) announces the extension of the suspension of the Canadian and the Ocean services, its long-distance routes, and the suspension of the Sleeper class on the Winnipeg-Churchill route until November 1, 2020. While there is still a great deal of uncertainty as to when both domestic and international travel will resume, VIA Rail will continue to assess how it can support the recommendations of the public health authorities in their response to the pandemic and in preparation for the progressive service recovery.
VIA Rail is also accelerating a previously established comprehensive program for the inspection and repair work regarding its Heritage Modernization Program that started in 2018. At that time, the Corporation undertook initiatives to renovate VIA Rail’s HEP equipment which have logged millions of kilometres since being put into service. In the course of recent weeks, some new structural issues have been discovered which will need to be addressed. “As a result, we will be in a position to progressively bring back our renowned long-distance services to full capacity for the upcoming 2021 peak season,” said Cynthia Garneau, President and CEO.
“This was not an easy decision to make but, given the current circumstances, the health and safety of our passengers, crew members and local communities must come first. As the travel industry grapples with the effects of COVID-19, we will use this extended pause to assess and identify which measures to implement in order to get back on track as soon and as safely as possible,” concluded Cynthia Garneau.
-via Press Release