Rail strike leads to propane being cut off to local grain dryers

Scott Persall, left, Elgin-Norfolk director for Grain Farmers of Ontario, Dan Kelly, chairman of the Propane Association of Canada, President Dave Karn of Dowler-Karn of Central Elgin and St. Thomas, Elgin-Middlesex-London MP Karen Vecchio, Cathy Lennon, general manager of the Ontario Federation of Agriculture and Chatham-Kent-Leamington MP David Epp spoke at a hastily-organized press conference at Dowler-Karn’s railhead for offloading propane in St. Thomas on Friday afternoon, Nov. 22. They urged Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to call an early start to the new Parliament and order striking CN rail workers back to their jobs. Dowler-Karn, like some other fuel suppliers across Canada, took the extraordinary step Thursday night, Nov. 21, of informing local grain drying operations that their propane deliveries were being cut off, to ensure supplies continued to heat livestock barns, rural homes and vital facilities such as hospitals. Agricultural representatives said they feared much of Ontario’s billion-dollar corn crop might be ruined by being left out in fields all winter. The CN strike comes just a year after a devastating outbreak of disease resulted in the loss of much of the 2018 crop. More in the Nov. 27 edition of The Aylmer Express.