Transport Canada, in what has become a series of proposed amendments, has issued a consultation White Paper on updates to the Transportation of Dangerous Goods (TDG) Regulations (TDGR) Part 12 Air.
This part references the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Technical Instructions (TI) along with TDG-specific supplemental requirements and exemptions. Some ICAO references date back to 2002 and changes to the TI have made some TDG provisions redundant or in need of updating. Also, there are some clarifications proposed to better align with the Canadian Aviation Regulations under the Aeronautics Act.
In the interest of clarification, Transport Canada hopes to increase the “one window” approach, wherein material is incorporated into the Part 12 TDGR rather than simply referencing an external document. This self-contained approach will still have to consider that changes to external documents might make references a more practical approach in some areas. The objective is also to harmonize this proposal with the “dynamic” (aka “ambulatory”) approach taken with the TDG International Harmonization Amendment.
TP14850 Update Consultation – May 2017 Draft
The Clock is Ticking – 3 Recent TDG Proposals
TDG Update: Proposed Harmonization/
Geography Counts – Limited Access Exemptions
A potential improvement to Part 12 includes adding a definition of “Limited Access”. The proposed definition reads:
“a location to or from which the transport of dangerous goods by means other than by aircraft is not reasonably possible, for at least Continue Reading…
A New Awareness Vehicle
Transport Canada has added a new item to the various informative offerings on the TDG home page. A link was added to an “Enforcement Action Summaries” listing to supplement existing guidance pages on topic-specific publications, orders, equivalency certificates, safety awareness material, etc.
This new page is intended to give the regulated community a better understanding of the types of offences that could subject them to penalties or orders to take corrective action. The objective is to provide an incentive to “deter wrongdoing” by demonstrating consequences to those who might choose to ignore the regulations; or, on a more positive note, provide an illustration of the advantages of understanding the regulations before an enforcement situation is encountered.
“I Fought the Law …” – or Ignorance is (Usually) No Excuse
Sections 22(3) and 40 of the TDG Act do provide for a defense of having taken “all reasonable measures” to comply with the Act. “Reasonable measures” would normally include acquiring and maintaining knowledge of the applicable regulations.
Although current enforcement activities are unlikely to result in the incarceration experienced by the misguided soul in Bobby Fuller’s 1966 classic hit, the TDG Act does provide for a range of consequences.
These consequences are represented in the published summaries under the following categories:
- Detention (of goods) notices
- Direction to remedy (non-compliances)
- Direction to “not import” or return DG to the point of Continue Reading…
The Cat Came Back – WHMIS 1988 Lives!
More Than Just a Date
As reported in Karrie Monette-Ishmael’s May 19 Blog, an order-in-council resulted in an extension to the Supplier deadlines for compliance with the GHS-based Hazardous Products Act/Regulation (WHMIS 2015). Canada Gazette II (CGII), published on May 31, provided some insight into the delay in the supplementary Regulatory Impact Analysis Statement (RIAS) associated with the extension.
The transition extension itself (from June 1, 2017 to June 1, 2018 for manufacturers/importers; and from June 1, 2018 to September 1, 2018 for distributors) was cut and dried. However, the details in the RIAS are a reminder that despite the harmonization focus, there are still some unresolved issues in implementing the new hazard communication system.
Confidential business information (CBI) in the context of WHMIS has always focussed on masking the disclosure of ingredients on the M(SDS). Officially, Canadian suppliers were expected to rely on the somewhat costly and administratively burdensome Hazardous Materials Information Review Act (HMIRA) process to obtain exemptions from disclosing CBI. Practically the provisions in the Controlled Products Regulations (CPR or WHMIS 1988) were used by most suppliers as a simpler alternate to protect CBI.
Although this was the practise almost from the start of WHMIS 1988, it appears to be news to the current organisation- to wit, in the “Background” section of the RIAS: “Health Canada officials have learned that Continue Reading…
Enforcement of Hazardous Materials Program Procedures
Many have heard the phrase, “money makes the world go around”. The phrase was made popular by the stage and film show “Cabaret”. In fact, that phrase is the name of one of the songs in the show. For a snippet of the song featuring Liza Minnelli, listen here.
What does this phrase have to do with the US transport regulations you may ask? It comes down to a particular section of 49 CFR. In Subpart D of Part 107 Hazardous Materials Program Procedures is a section entitled “Enforcement”. Within that subpart are the possible penalties a company could be assessed for violations to the requirements of 49 CFR. In particular, take a look at Sections §107.329 regarding the maximum civil penalties which could be assessed to a company.
Maximum Penalties Increase
Here’s where things get tricky. Anyone working with these regulations is familiar with the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015. Quite a mouthful, I know. This act basically requires federal agencies to adjust civil penalties each year to account for inflation. The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) is a federal agency. As such, on April 19, 2017, those penalties increased. Per the announcement:
The maximum civil penalty for a knowing violation is now $78,376, except that the maximum civil penalty is $182,877 for a violation that results in death, serious Continue Reading…
Updated State Variations
International shippers of dangerous goods by air have one advantage over shippers by other modes. The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) includes in its Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air a list of “state variations”. These indicate which countries have additional restrictions and requirements placed upon dangerous goods traveling to, from, or through those countries. Being aware of such variations can save shippers significant time and money – if your goods must travel through, say, Norway, your shipment might be stopped or even seized if Norwegian regulations don’t allow it.
Of course, as regulations and related information develop over time, these variations will change, sometimes faster than the actual Technical Instructions themselves. On May 19th, ICAO published an addendum to the state variations that were published in the 2017-2018 edition of the Technical Instructions. While there have not been a lot of changes, some of these are significant for shippers who must obtain permits or exemptions from state authorities, and one eases the requirements for shipping engines by aircraft in the United States.
The changed variations in the Addendum include the following:
Belgium – Variations BE1 specifies the regulation in which to find the Belgian definition of “explosive.” BE2 gives new contact numbers for the government department responsible for prior authorization for shipments of explosives, while BE4 gives new contact numbers for authorization Continue Reading…
The Problem with Smart Luggage
Some of you may remember the old credit card commercial that featured the epic journey of a self-propelled suitcase seeking its lost owner. Well, it turns out this wasn’t so entirely fantastic. There’s a new generation of “smart luggage” hitting the market that can tell airlines electronically who it belongs to and where it’s going, trail after you down airport hallways without a handle, and charge your cellphone if you can’t make it to one of those electrical outlets airports seem to hide on purpose. Some will even double as transport devices themselves, allowing travelers to zip around terminals on their own electric suitcase-scooters.
But these modern technologies come with a problem that’s often overlooked. The energy sources for all these seemingly-magical functions are usually lithium batteries. Lithium batteries are one of the main causes of fires related to dangerous goods on aircraft. So travelling with the newest piece of high tech luggage can bring headaches both for the traveller and the airline he or she flies on.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has for many years established rules for equipment containing lithium batteries carried by passengers or crew, but dangerous luggage is a new area. To help, they’ve published a guidance document that covers the dangers associated with such luggage, and instructions on how it can be carried safely.
The document lists various Continue Reading…
Extra, Extra Read All About It!
Health Canada has announced that the deadline for manufacturers and importers to comply with the HPR (a.k.a. WHMIS 2015) has been EXTENDED.
The deadline of June 1, 2017 has been delayed by one (1) year to June 1, 2018. The second deadline of June 1, 2018 has been delayed by three (3) months to September 1, 2018.
The orders and a regulatory impact analysis statement (RIAS) will be published in Canada Gazette Part II shortly. We will provide details as they become available. Stay tuned.
Finally, thank you to everyone that worked with Health Canada to make this extension a reality.
Check out our resources for complying with the WHMIS 2015 regulations »
Transport Canada’s Standard TP14850, “Small Containers for Transport of Dangerous Goods, Classes 3, 4, 5, 6.1, 8, and 9”
Transport Canada is well into the process of producing the 3rd Edition of TP14850. The current 2nd Edition (2010) has been in effect since it replaced the CGSB 43.150-97 standard in 2014. Changes to TP14850 are required to reflect current harmonization with the UN Recommendations, changes in the TDG regulations, improvements to ensure the integrity of standardized packaging, addition/clarification of Part 14 special cases, and simplify use of the standard.
Comments are welcomed until May 31, 2017.
An initial draft update was prepared for discussion in January 2016 and a committee of 30-40 stakeholders has been reviewing, discussing and proposing modifications between the initial draft and the May 2017 draft version of the 3rd Edition (by way of disclosure, the author of this Blog is one of the stakeholder representatives). The May 2017 draft follows these reviews and feedback from an initial 2016 public consultation.
Manufacturer’s Periodic Re-Test Obligation
A new requirement (Clause 7.1.7) requires the registered manufacturer to periodically, at least every 5 years, repeat performance tests on a representative sample. Typically, registration certificates are issued for 5 year periods.
One thing to note is that although TP14850 as currently written/proposed does not define “manufacturer” with respect to obligations under the standard, the application form for registration clarifies, in section 4 and Continue Reading…
A key difference that distributors of imported hazardous products are struggling with is the treatment of products that require re-labelling with Canadian-compliant labels.
WHMIS 1988 and WHMIS 2015 both require a “supplier” (seller) to ensure that products have compliant labels- i.e. as outlined in the respective “controlled” or “hazardous” products regulations. Manufacturers and Distributors, as suppliers are usually comfortable in complying when they are preparing/consolidating shipments of products initially labelled in compliance with the Canadian regulations for GHS-based required wording, pictograms, etc.
However, when receiving imports other mandatory features such as bilingual English/French text, a Canadian Supplier name/address and “non-GHS” classifications may not always be present.
Do It Here or Do It There?
Ideally the foreign supplier will have the instruction and capability to address Canadian label requirements when fulfilling the order from a Canadian customer- be it the end user or a distributor.
If the foreign supplier is unable to reliably provide WHMIS-compliant labels, the Canadian importer may supply the labels for application before shipment.
Practically this may not always be possible depending on the sophistication of the foreign supplier, the volume ordered or the uniqueness of the product. The Canadian distributor may bring non-compliant product to their facility/agent and re-label the product before delivery to the final customer who will have employees handling and/or using the product.
The above options are possible under both the WHMIS 1988 and WHMIS 2015 Continue Reading…
An Easter Parade!
(Marine Amendment-Part 11, Rail Car Standard TP14877 Revision, ERAP- Part 7 Consultation)
Transport Canada is heading into what seems to be an ambitious spring/summer period with a variety of projects related to the Transportation of Dangerous Goods (TDG) regulations. The latest notices are open for comment until the end of April and cover aspects of Parts 5, 7 and 11 (with implications for other parts) of the TDG regulations (TDGR).
SHIP- NO!- “VESSEL” AHOY! – MARINE PROVISIONS
Significant changes are proposed to TDGR Part 11 and Part 1 Special Cases to reflect the current Canada Shipping Act (CSA) and associated regulations, as well as commercial considerations. These affect definitions, terminology and the ability to efficiently transport fuels or medical/diving gases on passenger vessels.
In addition to the changes highlighted in the notice, there are several other noteworthy changes in the proposal.
“Near coastal” versus “Home-Trade” Voyages
The current Part 11 has been the subject of confusion regarding what constitutes the use of the IMDG Code versus the TDGR, particularly with voyages between Nova Scotia and Newfoundland. Retailers in particular have had difficulty in determining when consumer commodities can continue on to NL under TDGR Special Case 1.17. The wording in the current TDGR implies that the voyage would fall under a Home-Trade Voyage Class 1 from the Home-Trade Voyage Regulations. At certain times, the Marine Safety branch of Transport Canada Continue Reading…