Grade Crossings Regulations: what you need to know
There are about 14,000 public and 9,000 private grade crossings along more than 40,000 kilometres of federally regulated railway track in Canada. Transport Canada's Grade Crossings Regulations (the regulations) help to improve safety at these grade crossings.
On this page
- What is a grade crossing?
- Roles and responsibilities under the regulations
- Complaint and dispute resolution
- Contact us
What is a grade crossing?
A grade crossing is an intersection where a road, a sidewalk, a path or a trail crosses railway tracks at the same level. Grade crossings are also known as level crossings, railway crossings or train crossings.
Public grade crossings
Where railway tracks intersect with a road that is owned, open and maintained by a public authority, such as a province, municipality or band council, and is used by the general public.
Private grade crossings
Where railway tracks intersect with a road that is owned and used by private parties, such as farmers, commercial businesses or private individuals.
Roles and responsibilities under the regulations
The Grade Crossings Regulations improve safety at grade crossings by:
- setting comprehensive and enforceable safety standards for both new and existing grade crossings in Canada
- clearly defining the roles and responsibilities of railway companies, road authorities and private authorities
- ensuring that railway companies and road authorities share key safety information with each other
Railway companies, road authorities (provinces, municipalities and band councils) and private grade crossing owners are each responsible for managing the safety at grade crossings.
The regulations identify the roles and responsibilities of railway companies, road authorities and private authorities that relate to:
- information sharing
- crossing surfaces
- roadway and railway signs
- traffic signals
- warning systems
Complaint and dispute resolution
Who can help when complaints or issues become disputes that railway companies and road or private authorities can't resolve?
If the complaint or dispute is about grade crossing safety, contact Transport Canada.
If a railway company and a road authority disagree on who should pay for railway work at a grade crossing, either party can ask the Canadian Transportation Agency to apportion the costs of the project. Learn more at the Canadian Transportation Agency website.
For general inquiries
Rail Safety Branch
427 Laurier Avenue Street West
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0N5
Toll-free: 1-844-897-RAIL (1-844-897-7245)
Prairie and Northern: 1-888-463-0521