Neha Patil (Editor)

Rail World

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Industry  Rail transport
Headquarters  Rosemont
Founded  1999
Founder  Edward Burkhardt
Type of business  Privately held company

Area served  Canada, United States, Poland, Ukraine
Key people  Edward Burkhardt (President & CEO)
Subsidiaries  Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway, San Luis Central Railroad, Rail Polska, Cargo Central Europe, Rail World Locomotive Leasing, Rail World Ukraine

Rail World, Inc. is a rail transport holding company. Its specialties include railway management, consulting, investment, privatizations, and restructurings. Its purpose is to promote rail industry privatization by bringing together government bodies wishing to sell their stakes with investment capital and management skills.



Rail World was incorporated in July 1999 by Edward Burkhardt, who is the President and Chief Executive Officer.

As of 2013, hundreds of miles of the company's lines have been sold, turned over to government ownership or decommissioned. Rail World's assets consist of a controlling interest in the bankrupt 510 miles (820 km) Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway (a former Canadian Pacific Railway line through Québec and Maine), the 13 miles (21 km) San Luis Central Railroad in Colorado and a minority stake in Rail Polska.

Potential liability for hundreds of millions of dollars in environmental cleanup and rebuilding costs after the Lac-Mégantic derailment which incinerated forty-seven townfolk and destroyed much of downtown Lac-Mégantic, Quebec poses a risk that the company may not be able to continue as a going concern.

Response to Lac-Mégantic derailment

After the derailment at Lac-Mégantic, Quebec, Canada of a Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway freight train on 6 July 2013 which left 47 people dead or missing, president Edward Burkhardt visited Lac-Mégantic on 10 July 2013, and was heckled by residents who were critical of his company's response to the incident. After the accident the railway's safety record was called into question. Over the previous decade the firm recorded a higher accident rate than the rest of the US rail fleet, according to data from the Federal Railroad Administration. In the previous year the railroad had 36.1 accidents per million miles traveled, in comparison to a national average of 14.6 accidents per million miles traveled.

On August 7, 2013, the MM&A filed for bankruptcy protection in both the Quebec Superior Court in Montreal (under the Companies Creditors Arrangement Act) and the United States Bankruptcy Court in Bangor, Maine (under Chapter 11). The company owes more than seven million dollars to the municipality of Lac-Mégantic in cleanup costs the town has already paid to MM&A contractors and owes severance pay to its laid-off workers; liabilities are expected to increase as lawsuits are filed on behalf of victims of the disaster and as the long process of environmental decontamination and local rebuilding continues. The MM&A's certificate of fitness was revoked by the Canadian Transportation Agency on August 13, 2013, citing inadequate liability insurance; this effectively bans the MM&A from operating in Canada.


  • Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway (filed for bankruptcy)
  • Rail Polska
  • Rail World Locomotive Leasing
  • Rail World Ukraine, a freight forwarding service
  • San Luis Central Railroad
  • References

    Rail World Wikipedia

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