WEST CHICAGO, Ill. — State Rep. Maura Hirschauer, D-Batavia, and other state and local officials joined the Coalition to Stop CPKC Monday to formally oppose the proposed merger of Canadian Pacific Railway and Kansas City Southern Railroad. The Coalition, made up of the Villages of Bartlett, Bensenville, Hanover Park, Itasca, Roselle, and Schaumburg, the Cities of Elgin and Wood Dale, and DuPage County, condemns the merger due to the health and safety risks it poses to local communities.
“Though rail travel is important to state commerce, we cannot put profit over the health and safety of our communities. The proposed merger between Canadian Pacific Railway and Kansas City Southern Railroad will greatly increase the amount of freight trains running through our communities, undoubtedly increasing the risk of derailment and other dangers,” Hirschauer said. “As we watch and pray for the victims of the disastrous chemical spill in Ohio, caused by a derailed train, we must take action to ensure a similar tragedy does not befall our communities because of this reckless proposal.”
The $31 billion merger would increase the risk of derailments by quadrupling the number of trains traveling through the listed communities, as well as increase traffic gridlock and noise pollution. The Coalition is advocating for the U.S. Surface Transportation Board to deny the merger.
“Aside from the serious health and safety concerns we have over the merger, there is also potential for severe environmental impact to the Fox River, similar to the mass wildlife deaths in Ohio,” Hirschauer said. “We’ve seen the devastating effects of train derailment and we want better for our communities.”