CPR warns of another Lac Megantic if forced to rehire coke-abusing engineer

Canadian Pacific Railway crews drive past trains at the CP Rail yards in Calgary, Alberta, April...

Canadian Pacific Railway crews drive past trains at the CP Rail yards in Calgary, Alberta, April 29, 2014. REUTERS/Todd Korol

Andrew McIntosh, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:22 PM ET

MONTREAL - Canadian Pacific Railway is evoking the possibility of another Lac Megantic-like disaster if it is forced to rehire a dishonest, drug-abusing locomotive engineer the company sacked in 2013 after he derailed a train while using cocaine on the job.

The engineer, who has had a history of absenteeism and a gambling addiction, tested positive for cocaine use after he derailed a train in a CPR Montreal yard in 2012, court documents state.

Because the 45-year-old man initially and repeatedly denied using cocaine, the company's lawsuit also cites his "dishonesty and deception" as a reason they don't want him back.

The Teamsters Canada Rail Conference union grieved his termination, calling it "excessive."

Quebec railway labour arbitrator Michel Picher last month ordered CPR to rehire the engineer, a move that stunned the company's senior management.


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