Just this fall, some of the major terminals we're servicing finally shifted to 24-7 operation. That is a game-changer. As the railways, we have been encouraging 24-7 operation for a long time. As soon as you have a day when you're not unloading, it creates bumps in the supply chain. It causes trains to be stopped and it's difficult to get them started again. We're almost there with almost all of the terminals in Vancouver working 24-7. It's not quite all, but almost.
The rain issue is a concern. Until this spring, terminals in Vancouver had been able to load in rainy conditions using two operations. First, they were able to load through the feeder hole. Some decks of ships have holes in them. They were primarily started to load cement into ships, but basically grain shippers started to use these feeder holes to put their spouts in and load in the rain. They were also able to load using a tarping system. This spring the unions declared...it was declared that this was an unsafe operation. Right now there is no ability for the grain terminals to load in the rain. This is a concern, because when we get into our rainy period, it can cause serious delays.
We understand that there's a fix to that and that the feeder hole operation will be able to be used again shortly, but it's still not there. Already this fall there were a couple of situations where three to four days of rain happened and suddenly railcars could not be unloaded because the space in those terminals was fully taken up.
Anything that can be done to encourage these rain loading practices to be able to be used again would be very helpful.