Lithium
Safety Tips for Items with Lithium-Ion Batteries

Lithium-Ion Batteries in Our Lives

If there is one thing most of us have in common, it is how often we come in contact with items that use lithium-ion batteries. Whether it’s a laptop computer, cellphone, camera, or even an electronic cigarette, we rely on lithium ion batteries for many different purposes. Unfortunately for some consumers, when lithium-ion batteries fail, they do in devastating fashion. When a lithium battery explodes, it can cause a fire that generates temperatures up to 1000° F and can cause severe 3rd degree burns as the video below demonstrates.

What can we do to prevent such a catastrophic event from occurring while we utilize these everyday items that use lithium-ion batteries? Below is a list of safety tips when using items with lithium-ion batteries.

Lithium Battery Safety Tips

  • Only use the charger that came with your device. If you need to buy a new one, make sure the replacement is recommended for the use of your device by the manufacturer. Just because a charger fits in your device doesn’t mean that it is safe to use.

 

  • Do not overcharge your device. It is recommended that once your device is fully charged that you should unplug it.
  • Keep your device out of extremely high or low temperature locations. Do not place the battery in direct sunshine, or store the battery inside cars in significant hot or cold weather.
  • Do not expose the battery to water or allow the battery to get wet.
  • Do not use your device if you notice any damage to the battery after dropping it. If you suspect damage to the battery, take your device to the service center for inspection.
  • Do not carry or store the batteries together with necklaces, hairpins, or other metal objects.
  • Do not disassemble or modify the battery in any way. Modifying your electronic significantly increases the risk of explosion
  • Only transport your items with lithium-ion batteries in a containers that are specially designed and follow D.O.T guidelines.

As always, should you have any questions regarding lithium-ion batteries, please contact ICC Compliance Center at 1.888.442.9628 (USA) or 1.888.977.4834 (Canada).


Sources
http://batteryuniversity.com/learn/archive/lithium_ion_safety_concerns

http://www.genuinecells.com/blogs/safety-precautions-for-the-lithium-ion-batteries/

Lithium
Another Lithium Battery Recall

New Recall of Laptop Computer Battery Packs

An expanded recall of laptop computer battery packs for Panasonic battery packs used in Toshiba laptop computers was made on Wednesday January 4th, 2017.

The lithium-ion battery packs can overheat and cause burns and fire hazards.

This expanded recall involves Panasonic lithium-ion battery packs installed in 41 models of Toshiba Satellite laptops, including the Satellite models affected by the March 2016 recall. Toshiba has expanded the number of battery packs to include those sold between June 2011 and November 2016. The battery packs also were sold separately and installed by Toshiba as part of a repair. Battery packs included in this recall have part numbers that begin with G71C (G71C*******). Part numbers are printed on the battery pack.

If your battery pack is part of the recall, power off the laptop, remove the battery and follow the instructions to obtain a free replacement battery pack. Until a replacement battery pack is received, you should use the laptop by plugging into AC power only. Battery packs previously identified as not affected by the March 30, 2016 recall are included in this expanded announcement.

To see if your device is eligible for exchange, go to http://go.toshiba.com/battery or call Toshiba America Information Systems toll-free at 866-224-1346 any day between 5 a.m. and 11 p.m. PT.

As always, ICC is here for all of your safety needs. Contact us today for our Lithium Battery Multi-Modal transport course, packaging and marks and labels needed.

Source: http://www.recallowl.com/Consumer+Recalls/Recreational+Products/Toshiba+Expands+Recall+of+Laptop+Computer+Battery+Packs+Due+to+Burn+and+Fire+Hazards

Services
Inspector Issue

Gaining Regulatory Knowledge

Many of us have heard the phrase, “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing” at some point in conversation with people. What’s interesting is the phrase was originally “A little learning is a dangerous thing“. It comes from Alexander Pope’s poem called “An Essay on Criticism“. This phase can be applicable when you work in an area with ever-changing regulations. The key is to get more knowledge.

A prime example can be found in a September 2016 newsletter from Responsible Distribution Canada (RDC). This group was formerly called the Canadian Association of Chemical Distributors. In Volume 6 Issue 37 is the headline “Issue being reported with some WHMIS 2015 Inspectors RE: MSDS vs SDS“. In the article, RDC was contacted by a paint manufacturer. The manufacturer indicated that a Health Canada inspector was on the job site causing problems. At issue is the following:

“The HC inspector apparently said the paint manufacturer’s MSDS sheet was not acceptable because a “Safety Data Sheet” should now be supplied instead of a “Material Safety Data Sheet”. The inspector added that this change became effective in 2015 and said that the word “Material” should not be mentioned on the technical sheets.”

According to the manufacturer they have yet to convert to WHMIS 2015. In this case it is the inspector in error and a classic case of a little knowledge being dangerous.

Why?

Let’s discuss why. Canada aligned the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) with the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) in February 2015. This is why it is called WHMIS 2015. A part of the new regulation is to move from using the term “material safety data sheets” to just “safety data sheets”. There is a multi-year transition plan or phase in period in place before the new regulation goes into full effect. Here is where the inspector gets in trouble. It is during Phase 1 of the phase in plan that the terminology shifts. The dates for Phase 1 are February 11, 2015 to May 31, 2017. Since the paint manufacturer has yet to convert to WHMIS 2015, they still have time as allowed under Phase 1. They are in the right.

The inspector is aware of the changes in WHMIS 2015 which is great but also qualifies as a “little bit of learning”. Where he is “dangerous” is the fact that he was not aware of the time periods involved with the phase in of the new regulations. He was trying to force a regulatory change that is not yet mandatory. Had the inspector been more familiar with the new regulations this issue would not have happened.

Another part of Pope’s poem is the phrase, “To err is human, to forgive divine“. While this is a lovely sentiment, in the world of business and compliance it just isn’t possible. For a link to the complete RDC newsletter, click here.

Don’t be a “danger” to your business. Get trained beyond “a little bit of learning”. ICC Compliance Center offers a full range of courses including WHMIS 2015. Call us today for compliance audits and the multiple courses and learning platforms we offer.

Environmental Update
Chemical Spill Cooperation

Atchison, Kansas Chemical Spill

A little less than a month ago a small town near Kansas City, Kansas got a nasty surprise. According to local news reports a chemical spill at MGP Ingredients in Atchison caused quite stir around 8:00 in the morning.

The Kansas City Star reported the spill resulted in a mixing of Sodium Hypochlorite and Sulfuric Acid. The reaction of the two chemicals created a thick fog that covered much of downtown and areas north and west of there. Several areas were told to evacuate while others were told to “shelter in place” with doors and windows shut. Click here to view a video taken by drone of the chemical plume. By 11:00 am officials reported the spill under control and people were allowed back into their homes and business. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sent personnel to assist in the investigation.

Thanks to a good communication between MPG Ingredients, the City of Atchison and the local Fire/Emergency crews there were no serious injuries reported. Those caught in the fog, roughly 34 townspeople, had respiratory issues including coughing and difficulty breathing. At the time the article was written, there was no word on the number of affected MGP employees.

The key take away from this story is the communication element. It took less than 3 hours for this spill to be handled and for folks to be safely back at home, school or work. If MGP Ingredients had not reported the spill promptly, then the number of injuries would be higher. If local officials had not responded as quickly as they did by using the radio and social media, then the number of injuries would be much higher. If the local fire crew had not known what was needed to help the fog dissipate, then the number of injuries would be much higher.

There are always those that complain about updating hazard communication plans, workplace labels, safety data sheets, and evacuation plans. For those my response is simple. Here is the reason we do this. Here is why they are needed. Given the scope of the cloud and the area it covered, consider how many people were at risk. Had things been handled differently a much worse outcome is a definite.

As always, ICC Compliance Center is here to help you with all of your regulatory needs. For more information on our supplies and services visit our website: http://www.thecompliancecenter.com.

Danger Placard
FBI Promoting “Suspicious Sales” Video

Availability of Dangerous Chemicals

Ever since the Oklahoma City bombing, industry has been aware of how criminals may try to obtain hazardous chemicals to create their own improvised weapons. Nowadays, U.S. and Canadian transportation regulations address how to protect chemicals in transport and prevent theft or tampering. Most industrial manufacturing and storage facilities have already implemented security systems and verification procedures for large customers.

But there’s a gaping hole in the system through which criminals can still get their hands on the ingredients they need. Many consumer products openly available in retail stores can be used as easily as industrial supplies to create bombs and poisons, or to be used in the dangerous production of illicit drugs. These purchases are often hard to track, because of the relative anonymity of consumer purchases.

The Chemical Countermeasures Unit (CCU) of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is promoting a video on how to recognize suspicious sales of chemicals. The video, titled Suspicious Sales, dramatizes an explosion in an apartment building and the subsequent investigation, done in Law and Order style. Two detectives track down the purchases used to create the bomb based on standard commercial receipts found at the scene of the explosion (our criminal, in this case, having blown himself up by accident in his own apartment).

The chemicals were purchased at a number of stores – a beauty supply store, a hardware store selling pool chemicals, and a gardening depot. In all of them, the staff noticed strange things about the customer, but were unsure what to do about the situation.

The video’s goal is to give retail employees the tools to identify suspicious customers. The creators realize that these purchases are not specifically illegal, but alert employees can help authorities prevent incidents or provide assistance in identifying criminals after an incident.

Employees should be alert to signs of a suspicious sale. These include:

  • The customer is unable to answer simple questions about the product’s intended use (or gives vague answers)
  • The customer shows unusual preoccupation with the product’s chemical composition (in the video, a sales associate describes the perpetrator’s hunt for pool chemicals containing one specific ingredient)
  • The customer is new or unknown
  • The customer is reluctant or refuses to show valid identification
  • The customer makes large cash purchases, or uses someone else’s credit card
  • There is an unusual ordering pattern, such as buying strange quantities (more hair chemicals than a salon would need, for example), out-of-season purchases (such as pool chemicals when most pools are closed) or using a P.O. Box shipping address rather than a home address

So, if you’re a retail employee confronted with a suspicious purchase, what should you do?

  • After a suspicious encounter, make notes. Write down as much information as you have been able to gather, such as the person’s name, physical description, license plate number, and the details of the transaction
  • Notify your store manager, loss prevention officer or security manager
  • If the purchase raises serious concerns, report it to local or federal authorities so it can be investigated further

The FBI and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have also published a series of flash cards for identifying suspicious customers and providing resources to retail staff. These three cards cover “Suspicious Behavior Awareness,” “Hazardous Chemical Awareness”, and “Peroxide Product Awareness.” They’re available as a free download for printing at The Department of Homeland Security’s TRIPwire website.

It’s an unavoidable fact of modern life that we must, in the words of the Harry Potter character Mad-Eye Moody, practice “constant vigilance” against those who plan to use chemicals to hurt others. Salespersons, cashiers, sales assistants, and other employees of retail outlets can help just as people in industrial settings to ensure that hazardous chemicals are kept out of the hands of criminals. Employers must also do their part by establishing internal procedures for reporting suspicious activities, and encouraging staff to “trust their gut” about suspicious customers, as the video advises

To obtain a free DVD of this video, you can e-mail the FBI at chemteam@fbi.gov, with complete contact information (name, title, store name or organization, street address, and phone number.) Or you can view it on YouTube:


If you have questions about hazardous chemical security regulations and how they can affect your operations, please contact us here at ICC The Compliance Center at 1-888-442-9628 (USA) or 1-888-977-44834 (Canada).

Lithium
Samsung Galaxy Note 7 Recall & Exchange

IATA Training & Lithium Batteries

I recently taught an IATA refresher training in New York. In the class we touched on transporting lithium batteries by air, as there has been so many changes this year to the regulations. To make it relevant to today’s world, I mentioned the newest warning for passengers to “shut off completely all Samsung Galaxy Note 7 phones” before boarding any flights. According to several news reports these phones are overheating and even exploding. Having made the point, the class moved on to marks, labels, and the dangerous goods declaration. After class as I was preparing to head to the airport, one of the participants came and asked what my itinerary was. It was on Delta Airlines through Atlanta, GA. Come to find out just that morning a flight from Norfolk, VA to Atlanta had a fire on board due to a spare Lithium battery wedged between two seats.

Now, picture my arrival to the Buffalo/Niagara Falls airport that afternoon. As we are preparing to board the warning to turn off all Galaxy Note 7 phones was again broadcasted. Once on board, several of us asked the cabin stewards if they had heard about that morning’s plane. At one point during the discussion, a fellow passenger called out, “Danger, Will Robinson, Danger” from the 1960’s TV show Lost in Space. For those of you who are too young or not science fiction nerds like me, listen to Robot’s warning:

What is Wrong with the Galaxy Note 7’s Battery?

Once home I wondered why are these phones so at risk for overheating and exploding. This put me into research mode. The advertising campaign for these phones includes such claims as “bigger battery”, “powered for up to nine hours”, and “water resistant”. What is happening instead is overheating. This overheating can be caused by the environment like hot cars or from within the battery itself. It is the latter that is causing the problem for the Galaxy Note 7. Samsung is calling it a “battery cell issue”. For those of us in the dangerous goods business we know that phrase isn’t exactly correct but it gets the point across. As a reminder batteries are a series or group of cells connected together.

Samsung Galaxy Note 7 Recall & Exchange

There is currently a recall on these phones as well as an exchange program in place for the United States. The recall is for devices sold before September 15, 2016. The recall stresses “it is extremely important to stop using your device, power it down and immediately exchange it …” The Exchange Program allows the owner to do the following:

  1. Exchange your current Galaxy Note 7 device with a new Galaxy Note7 as approved by the CPSC available no later than September 21, 2016; or
  2. Exchange your current Galaxy Note 7 for a Galaxy S7 or Galaxy S7 Edge and replacement of any Note 7 specific accessories with a refund of the price difference between devices; or
  3. Contact your point of purchase to obtain a refund.

To see if your device is eligible for exchange, go to http://www.samsung.com/us/note7recall/ and scroll to the Eligibility section. This same link will also provide owners with the websites and contact numbers for the retailers that sell the phones and provides a Frequently Asked Questions section.


As always, ICC is here for all of your safety needs. Contact us today for our Lithium Battery Multi-Modal transport course.

USPS Regulations and Updates
United States Postal Service Publication 52

USPS Publication 52

When one ships hazardous materials one does not think of using the United States Post Office, because there are very few times that USPS will actually accept these materials. As listed in  18 U.S.C. 1716, “all matter that is outwardly or of its own force dangerous or injurious to life, health, or property is nonmailable”. However, some hazardous materials and otherwise restricted matter, or perishable matter are permitted to be mailed when the requirements in USPS Publication 52 are fully met.

USPS recently updated their hazardous materials regulations titled: Publication 52, Hazardous, Restricted, and Perishable Mail.

The United States Postal Service defines hazardous materials as follows:

A hazardous material is any article or substance designated by the U.S. Department of Transportation as being capable of posing an unreasonable risk to health, safety, or property during transportation. In international commerce, hazardous materials are known as “dangerous goods.”

If you are interested in using USPS to mail hazardous materials, Chapter 3, Appendix A and Appendix C provide information about hazardous materials that are permitted  by mail.

OSHA Update
2 Million Plus Workers Get Protection From Deadly Dust! (Part 2)

Silicosis and OSHA Standards

As you may recall in my last blog, I spoke of a tragic story out of West Virginia. It was the Hawk’s Nest Industrial Incident and the repercussions on the people of that time in the 1930s. Up to date each year illness continues takes the lives of thousands of workers. One of these illness still present is caused by a deadly dust – crystalline silica which can cause Silicosis. It is approximated that 2.3 million people in the U.S. are exposed to silica at work. Over time workers have come to count on OSHA to adopt standards to be enforced in the workplace. These standards aid in the reduction of the risks to workers from contracting illness or injury in the workplace.

Let’s review what crystalline silica is. Crystalline silica is an important industrial material found largely in the earth’s crust and is commonly found in the likes of sand, stone, rock, concrete, brick, block, and mortar. It is found in materials that we see every day in the construction of roads, buildings, and sidewalks. Silica dust occurs in the workplace when operations involve cutting, sawing, drilling, and crushing of concrete, brick, block, rock, and stone. It can also be found among operations that use sand products, such as glass manufacturing, foundries, sand blasting, and hydraulic fracturing.

Crystalline silica (respirable) is hazardous to workers who inhale small particles, which puts a worker at risk of developing silica-related diseases that can be serious. Even deadly. Tiny as these particles are they can be easily inhaled and get deep into workers lungs, which then causes silicosis, an irreversible, incurable, and fatal lung disease. There are other repercussions from exposure to silica, workers are at risk for lung cancer, COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), and kidney disease.

Silica Exposure Limits

OSHA and the workforce has known about the dangers of silica for a long time. As a matter of fact more than 80 years ago, U.S. Secretary of Labor Frances Perkins brought experts and stakeholders together to figure out ways to safeguard labors from silica. OSHA’s current PEL’s (permissible exposure limits) for silica are over 40 years old. There has been proof that shows the current exposure limits do not protect workers. For instance silica exposure has been proven to cause lung cancer and kidney disease at the current PEL’s.

In efforts to protect workers from the dangers of crystalline silica, OSHA has finalized a ruling and put in place standards for silica. One for general industry and maritime, and the other for construction. OSHA has taken the time to gather information through many venues getting them to the point of establishing the final rule for silica. They have accomplished this through extensive review of scientific evidence from current industry standards, public outreach efforts, weeks of public hearings, and a period in which they took comments from the public. By doing this the ruling provides reasonable, inexpensive and flexible strategies for employers to implement protection for their workers. It is estimated that this ruling will save the lives of 600 or more workers each year and once fully implemented prevent more than 900 cases of Silicosis each year.

Just how will the rule protect workers? The rule reduces the volume of silica dust that a worker can be exposed to (PEL equation can be found here). Employers will have to implement controls and practices that reduce workers’ exposure to the silica dust. Employers will also have to safeguard that silica dust is wetted down or vacuumed up in dust collectors to prevent workers from breathing it in. Many employers have already been implementing measures to protect their workers from silica.

In brief under the new rule employers are required to:

  • limit access to high exposure areas
  • provide training
  • provide respiratory protection (if controls are not enough to limit exposure)
  • provide written exposure control plans
  • measure exposures

Employers are also required under this ruling to offer medical examinations to workers that are considered to be highly exposed to silica dust.

OSHA Compliance

OSHA will help employers comply with the rule to protect their workers by providing flexibility to help employers protect workers from silica exposure. They have given from one to five years to get the correct protections in place. OSHA has staggered compliance dates to give sufficient time to meet the requirements of this rule.

There are many industries affected by this new rule, are you one of them?

Here are the industries projected to be affected according to OSHA:

  • Construction
  • Glass manufacturing
  • Pottery products
  • Structural clay products
  • Concrete products
  • Foundries
  • Dental laboratories
  • Paintings and coatings
  • Jewelry production
  • Refractory products
  • Ready-mix concrete
  • Cut stone and stone products
  • Abrasive blasting
  • Refractory furnace installation and repair
  • Railroad transportation
  • Oil and gas operations

If specifications are followed correctly employers can be confident that they are providing workers with the necessary level of protection. What are these specifications? Stay tuned for part 3 of this silica blog series where I will detail the Crystalline Silica Rule.

More information can be found here: https://www.osha.gov/silica/index.html

Other Articles in the Silica Blog Series

Crystalline Silica Rule (Part 3)

Silica Dust Just One Account in History (Part 1)

PHMSA
PHMSA Update – Reverse Logistics Ruling

A final rule from the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), DOT has been adopted into the regulation on March 31, 2016. This ruling is the HM-253 Reverse Logistics ruling (RRR).

PHMSA has adopted regulatory amendments of certain hazardous materials by highway transportation applicable to the reverse logistics shipments. This ruling defines “reverse logistics” and provides provisions for reverse logistics of hazardous materials inside the scope of this ruling.

I used to work in the automotive industry and I can think of many examples that in my time there where parts should’ve been handled as hazardous and were not. An example is that some automotive parts that would be purchased and powered by the vehicle engines would be returned to our stores after being used and contained residual fuel. When we would first receive the automotive part in from our supplier it contained no fuels and therefore was not hazardous. Once returned from the customer after being used now had residue. Which could create the potential for it to be hazardous and therefore pose a risk during transportation back to the supplier or manufacture. This would cause it to now be regulated. Though there are many scenarios, this is just one possibility.

How can this be done? Do the workers at the retail stores have to be trained now? What do this mean for us as shippers?

Well let’s start by defining what this actually means. The definition for reverse logistics in the 49 CFR means the process of offering for transport or transporting by motor vehicle goods from a retail store for return to its manufacturer, supplier, or distribution facility for the purpose of capturing value (e.g., to receive manufacturer’s credit), recall, replacement, recycling, or similar reason. This definition does not include materials that meet the definition of a hazardous waste as defined in this section.

It was noted within the petition for this rule making that reverse logistics shipments of hazardous materials were able to be classified as Other Regulated Material (ORM-D) and could be shipped under the “Consumer Commodity” shipping designation.

The regulations have updated and you will now find references throughout in regard to reverse logistics. More specifically you can find in part 173.157, newly added, the authorization for Reverse logistics – General requirements and exceptions for reverse logistics.

The regulatory text is as follows:

(a) Authorized hazardous materials. Hazardous materials may be offered for transport and transported in highway transportation under this section when they meet the definition of reverse logistics as defined under §171.8 of this subchapter. However, hazardous materials that meet the definition of a hazardous waste as defined in §171.8 of this subchapter are not permitted to be offered for transport or transported under this section. Hazardous materials authorized for transport according to a special permit as defined in §171.8 of this subchapter must be offered for transportation and transported as authorized by the special permit.

(b) When offered for transport or transported by non-private carrier. Hazardous materials must be both authorized for limited quantity provisions as well as explicitly authorized for reverse logistics transportation under their applicable limited quantities section. Except for alternative training provisions authorized under paragraph (e) of this section, all hazardous materials must otherwise meet the requirements for a limited quantity shipment.

(c) When offered for transport or transported by private carrier. Hazardous materials are authorized under paragraph (b) of this section or are subject to the following limitations:

(1) Division 1.4G materials offered for transport and transported in accordance with §173.65 of this subchapter.

(2) When sold in retail facilities; Division 1.4G or 1.4S fireworks, Division 1.4G ammunition, or Division 1.4G or 1.4S flares. Shipments offered for transport or transported under this subparagraph are limited to 30 kg (66 pounds) per package. All explosive materials subject to an approval must meet the terms of the approval, including packaging required by the approval.

(3) Equipment powered by flammable liquids or flammable gases.

(i) Flammable liquid-powered equipment. The fuel tank and fuel lines of equipment powered by an internal combustion engine must be in the closed position, and all fuel tank caps or closures must be securely in place.

(ii) Flammable gas-powered equipment. A combustion engine using flammable gas fuel or other devices using flammable gas fuel (such as camping equipment, lighting devices, and torch kits) must have the flammable gas source disconnected and all shut-off devices in the closed position.

(4) Division 2.1 or 2.2 compressed gases weighing less than 66 pounds and sold as retail products. For the purposes of this section a cylinder or aerosol container may be assumed to meet the definition of a Division 2.1 or 2.2 materials, respectively, even if the exact pressure is unknown.

(5) Materials shipped under this paragraph (c) must also comply with the segregation requirements as required in §177.848.

(6) Shipments made under this section are subject to the incident reporting requirements in §171.15.

(d) Hazard communication. Hazardous materials offered for transportation and transported by private carrier in accordance with paragraph (c) of this section may use the marking “REVERSE LOGISTICS—HIGHWAY TRANSPORT ONLY—UNDER 49 CFR 173.157” as an alternative to the surface limited quantity marking found under §172.315(a). Size marking requirements found in §172.301(a)(1) apply.

(e) Training. (1) Any person preparing a shipment under this section must have clear instructions on preparing the reverse logistics shipment to the supplier, manufacturer, or distributor from the retail store. This includes information to properly classify, package, mark, offer, and transport. These instructions must be provided by the supplier, manufacturer, or distributor to ensure the shipment is correctly prepared for transportation or through training requirements prescribed under part 172 subpart H of this subchapter.

(2) Employers who do not provide training under part 172 subpart H of this subchapter must:

(i) Identify hazardous materials subject to the provisions of this section, verify compliance with the appropriate conditions and limitations, as well as ensure clear instructions from the manufacturer, supplier, or distributor associated with product’s origination or destination;

(ii) Ensure clear instructions provided are known and accessible to the employee at the time they are preparing the shipment; and

(iii) Document that employees are familiar with the requirements of this section as well as the specific return instructions for the products offered under this section. Documentation must be retained while the employee is employed and 60-days thereafter. Alternatively, recordkeeping requirements under part 172 subpart H may be used.

We can definitely see where some business will be able to make use of this regulatory change. Always remember to check the regulations for the most recent changes. Also be sure to make use of our regulatory helpline by calling ICC!

Canada!
Transport Canada Issues Protective Direction 36

On April 28, 2016, Transport Canada issued its latest Protective Direction. This Direction, number 36, will replace a previous one, Protective Direction 32, with more detailed instructions for rail carriers.

Protective Directions are rules that are not included in Canada’s Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations (TDG). Instead, they are announced by Transport Canada, and are published on their website. Usually, these directives are used when Transport Canada believes it’s important to bring in a new rule quickly in order to protect the public. Since amending the regulations can take months or longer, Part 13 of TDG allows them to use this method to respond to important issues with appropriate speed.

Protective Direction 36 requires Canadian Class I rail carriers to either publish information on the carrier’s website, or provide information to designated Emergency Planning Officials (EPOs) of each jurisdiction through which the carrier transports dangerous goods. This information includes:

  • Aggregate information on the nature and volume of dangerous goods that the rail carrier transported by railway car through the last calendar year (broken down by quarter);
  • The number of unit trains loaded with dangerous goods operated in the jurisdiction in the last year (again, broken down by quarter); and
  • The percentage of railway cars carrying dangerous goods that were operated by the rail carrier through the jurisdiction in the last calendar year.

Rail carriers transporting dangerous goods by railway car in a province must, by March 15 of the following year, publish on its website a report in both official languages detailing the dangerous goods shipments, including the percentage of cars that were loaded with dangerous goods, the top ten dangerous goods carried, the percentage of these top ten goods as part of the dangerous goods transported in this province, and the percentage of all residual dangerous goods on the total dangerous goods transported in that province.

Further details are given in the Protective Direction about how the rail carrier must communicate with the designated Emergency Planning Official in each jurisdiction, and how they must provide information to the agency CANUTEC to improve communication during accidents.

Protective Direction 36 replaces the earlier Protective Direction 32, and takes effect on April 28, 2016, the day it was issued. The full text of the Direction can be found at http://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/tdg/safety-menu-1281.html.

Do you have any further questions about Protective Directions? Contact ICC Compliance Center here at 888-442-9628 (U.S.) or 888-977-4834 (Canada), and ask for one of our regulatory specialists.