National Railway Day - Virtual Speaker Series

National Railway Day - Virtual Speaker Series

On November 4th, 2020 at 1 p.m. EST, CARS hosted a full virtual conference on Hopin in place of the cancelled National Railway Day 2020.

The theme for this event will be "Bridging the Gap: Non-Stop Innovation".

As an industry that supports the movement of people and material we also want to encourage the movement of ideas and technology. 
Innovation is an important theme that we believe bridges the various gaps that occur in our industry, such as technology, gender, age, and even culture. 
It is a shared desire to create more effective ideas, processes and products to aid in the success of businesses.

There was an opportunity to discuss how companies are coping and continuing business through the current pandemic. 


Innovation Zone Presenters: 
Instrumentel Ltd
Holland LP 


Exhibitor Booths

Booths are available for purchase on the website at the following prices:

Small $50
Medium $75
Large $100

Do you have questions about what a booth looks like?
Please email Hayley Heaslip at



11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Exhibitor Booths

12:30 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. Welcome

1:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. Kyle Mulligan, CP

1:30 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. Innovation Zone A

2:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. Erik Olson, RSA

2:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. Innovation Zone B

3:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. Faye Ackermans, TSBC

3:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Members Award Ceremony + VIA Rail Giveaway

4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Cynthia Garneau, VIA Rail


Award Recipients:


Innovation award:  This award is for members that developed advance or innovative technologies to meet the needs of the rail industry.
The businesses contribute to making a strong and rapidly growing innovative industry and are creating a positive impact on the rail industry and the community. 

Cad Railway Industries Ltd (CadRI)
Side Sill Replacement for Bombardier Bi-Level Coaches

Early into its multi-year, contract with Metrolinx for the major refurbishment of their generation 2 bilevel coach fleet,
CadRI identified serious side sill metallurgical corrosion and fatigue that compromised
the structural integrity of the entire bi-level coach design. The competitively bid contract was suddenly
at risk of being cancelled, as the bi-level coaches were no longer considered safe to return to a scheduled
commuter service. Scrapping the bi-levels was the only remaining option. CadRI’s equipment
engineering team intervened, and their investigation resulted in an innovative, and radical solution,
comparable in severity and complexity to human hip replacement surgery. While the bi-level coach was
already stripped down ready for an extreme makeover, a large jig, custom-designed and built by CadRI,
clamped the bi-level coach along its full length, long enough for the corroded metal to be cut out, and
new structural steel to be welded into place.
CadRI was so confident in the structural durability of the new side sill design, that it certified an up to 20
year bi-level useful life extension for Metrolinx. This is the first case in the North American railway and
transit industry where an entire structural side sill was replaced, and the rail equipment returned to
active service.
The side sill replacement program was initially developed by CadRI in 2016, and the bi-level
refurbishment program with Metrolinx is coming to an end in 2020. In the interim 4 years of in-service
testing and monitoring, CadRI has fully validated that the side sill replacement program is truly a
cost-effective and safe way to significantly extend the useful life of a bi-level coach. The success of this
program was recently recognized by a Transit Authority in the USA, and CadRI is currently in the process
of repeating the side sill replacement program for that Transit Authority’s own bi-level fleet, and we
hope to do the same for the other 12 Bombardier bi-level coach users in North America.


The Greenbrier Companies
Virtual Sample Railcar™ (VSR)

The Greenbrier Companies developed Virtual Sample Railcar™ (VSR) to remotely bring customers into the
plant to inspect the quality of a sample railcar from the convenience of their own conference room or home
office. The traditional in-person event requires the customer to travel to the oftentimes remote facility and visually
inspect the first railcars off the line. Greenbrier developed VSR as a safe, secure portal into our global factories
for no cost to our customers.

VSR is a live and interactive customer event that includes:
- Customer specific secure portal
- Super high-resolution and 360-degree photography
- Live streaming inspection and demonstration
- Pre-recorded “Walk the Line” video
- Review of technical documents

VSR was designed around new railcar builds—including lessors and lessees—and since the COVID-19
pandemic has grown to include customer inspection of railcar repair work. Greenbrier’s marketing team began
developing the program over two years ago and testing with select customers in October 2018. After a soft
launch, Greenbrier has rolled the program out to all customers—thereby replacing all physical sample railcar
events—since March 2020. While some competitors have tried to imitate VSR, none has been successful.
Greenbrier designed VSR to save customers time and money—which is still an important marketing strategy—
but it has only become more vital due to pandemic-related travel restrictions.
VSR has saved millions in unneeded customer travel and security costs, not to mention days out of the office
for shippers, railroads and lessors.
Watch the demonstration video: 


VIA Giveaway

Thank you to VIA Rail Canada for sponsoring our VIA Giveaway prize: 

via rail logo

A VIA Rail Canada ticket voucher valued at $5000!

Register for NRD 2020 for a chance to win!



Ekyrail Enterprises Inc.
The Greenbrier Companies
Unipart Rail
Holland LP
Summit Infrastructure
Rail Vision Analytics
Rail Industries Canada
Herzog Contracting of Canada
Quality Turbocharger Components
Milrail Inc.
Rail Shop Services Inc.
Integrity Rail Products

Speakers / Panelists