TDG
TDG International Harmonization 2017 (TDG SOR/2017-137)

It’s Here, It’s Here! Feast Your Eyes on TDG International Harmonization 2017

(with apologies to “Genie” – aka the late Jim Backus …)

As predicted in last week’s blog on adoption of 2016 editions of CGSB standards, and reviewed in the Canada Gazette I (CG I) blog referenced therein, today’s Canada Gazette II (CG II) formalizes a variety of changes to the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations (TDGR).

The amendment, despite the “International Harmonization” working title is officially referenced as SOR/2017-137 and essentially follows the CG I proposal reviewed in earlier blogs. However, as expected, there have been some changes.

See our earlier articles on the CG I proposal:

An observation on the contents of this amendment – it appears that a rumoured dropping of italicized “guidance” text has begun in SOR/2017-137. The TDGR have been somewhat unique in this approach, but the word is that it is not in keeping with justice department philosophy that guidance material should be separate from the mandatory regulatory text – e.g. in an FAQ or other separate guidance document. This amendment incorporates several instances into the regulatory text and removes several others. Fortunately, the very useful listing of UN numbers pertaining to SP are retained at the end of each SP.

By the Numbers – TDG Parts Amended

PART 1: Interpretations, General Provisions, Special Cases

Standards and Other Regulations

Ambulatory references (i.e. “as amended” or “current” editions rather than a specific date) of specified standards will now be the official versions referenced in the Table in section 1.3.1. Also referred to as “dynamic” references, the requirement to use the latest version will apply to those issued by CGSB (except CGSB-32.301, withdrawn and no longer being updated) and CSA on packaging design and/or manufacture and/or use. Also formalised in this section. The same referencing applies to 49 CFR, ICAO TI and Supplement, the IMDG Code, and the UN Recommendations and Manual of Tests & Criteria.

ASTM, CGA, ISO, MIL, TP ULC, standards, and OECD Guidelines, however, still invoke specific editions (i.e. “static” references) as the officially recognised version for the TDGR. It seems strange that TP14850 and TP14877- both issued by Transport Canada- remain in the static category.

The amendment provides a six month transition period to comply with a new edition of an “ambulatory” standard.

Definitions and Special Cases

Changes, additions and deletions have occurred in these sections as a result of the ambulatory references and/or redundancies in the updated Schedule 2 Special Provisions. A new Special Case 1.50 recognizes that propane cylinders used in hot air ballooning may be filled to a higher volume and replaces existing equivalency certificates. Special Cases 1.29 (DG in instruments or equipment) and 1.34.1 (gasoline to operate instruments or equipment) have been repealed.

PART 2: Classification

Flammable Liquids – Re-assignment of PG for Viscous Liquids

The conditions for “downgrading” the Packing Group (PG) for viscous liquids has been revised in keeping with current UN criteria.

Flammable Solids/Self-Reactive Substances

Criteria have been added to classify self-accelerating polymerizing substances to Class 4.1. Test criteria for addition of these substances are analogous to those for determining categories of organic peroxides- i.e. Manual of Tests protocol for SADT (self-accelerating decomposition temperature) is used to determine SAPT (self-accelerating polymerization temperature) for self-polymerizing substances. Four new UN numbers under Class 4.1 have consequently been added to TDGR Schedule 1.

Other Classification Changes

Test protocols for Class 5.2, 8, and 9 (lithium batteries) have been updated or clarified to harmonize with current UN protocols. The entries in Schedule I for UN2977, UN2978 (Uranium hexafluoride) and UN2815 (n-aminoethylpiperazine) now include a subsidiary Class 6.1 hazard. However, Uranium hexafluoride in excepted packages (UN3507) now has a primary hazard of Class 6.1 (with Class 7 & Class 8 being subsidiary).

PART 3: Documentation

The only direct amendment to this part is in the reference to the ICAO TI certification statement. However, changes in Schedules can affect required documentation – e.g. Special Provision (SP) 34 no longer requires a document. This reinforces the wisdom of always reviewing SP associated with a Schedule 1 entry.

PART 4: Safety Marks

Class 9

Transport Canada is updating to mirror requirements in other regulations regarding labelling (and perhaps placarding) of lithium batteries- the new Class 9 Lithium Battery label is invoked in new 4.10(1)(b.1).

New lithium battery label

The deadline of December 31, 2018 to complete the label changeover is in new SP159.

A change from the CGI proposal implies that where placards are required a standard Class 9 placard continues to be used, however the CGII expression may still need clarification. CGI proposed amending Part 4 (4.15 & the Appendix) and adding SP 159 to require the Lithium Battery Class 9 to also be used for placarding (unlike 49 CFR and the IMDG Code). Although reference to its use for placards have been dropped in SOR/2017-137 Part 4 amendments, it remains a stipulation in SP159.

Class 9 TDG label

In each case Canada is conforming to the UN convention of underlining the number “9” at the bottom of labels and placards. The underlined “9” on the regular Class 9 placard is mandatory following the general six-month transition date of January 12, 2018.

Lithium Battery Handling Mark

New Lithium Battery Mark and Pictogram

The 2017 version of the lithium battery handling mark is officially adopted in SP 34, replacing the requirement for equivalent wording on exempt packages and shipping documents (no longer require a document for SP 34 exempted). The mark may be used now, but becomes mandatory, as indicated in amended SP 34(5) after a transition period ending on December 31, 2018. Until then the previous requirements may continue.

Overpack Marking

In addition to the CG I intent, in keeping with other regulations, of not requiring an “Overpack” mark when required DG markings are visible- and specifying a 12 mm letter height- additional clarification has been provided. A safety mark must be visible pertaining to “each class” overpacked- i.e. in the case of a stretch-wrapped skid one needn’t have to see each individual package.

Other Safety Marks

The “Fumigation Sign” has been modified to include the date of ventilation as adopted in Part 4.21 in 2014. A typo, implying the entry of “UN3475” instead of “3475” on placarding in Part 4.19, has been corrected. The word “toxic” is removed from “inhalation hazard” in 4.23, in keeping with 49CFR harmonization. Similarly the letter size is specified in 4.18.2 (anhydrous ammonia) and 4.23 depending on the type of container.

PART 5: Means of Containment

Updated Standards

The changes in sections in “current” editions and their content adopted in Part 1 results in edits to 5.6, 5.12, 5.14, 5.15 and 5.16; including the removal of 5.16.1 and 5.16.2.

Crude Oil Clarification

The changes to rail car requirements are supplemented by a clarifying regulatory interpretation of “Crude Oil, Oil and Refined Petroleum Products in a new 5.1.

US Harmonization

In addition to reflecting updated standards, Part 5.10 now includes reference to accepting US-qualified cylinders.

Part 6: Training and Part 7: ERAPs

No direct changes to the sections in this amendment. New standards, reporting, and other changes may affect company-specific training. None of the new Schedule 1 listings have ERAP triggers.

Part 8: Reporting

ICAO “Dangerous Goods Occurrence” reporting requirements have been added.

Modal Updates

All modes (Parts 9-12) now incorporate the requirement for “consignor’s certification” on shipping documents.

Part 9: Road

Part 9.1 is expanded to include reciprocity for US special permit exemptions, to first destination.

Note: “exceptions” are still excluded from reciprocity if they are not mirrored in the TDGR.

Part 10: Rail

Part 10.1 as for Part 9.1. Also 10.1.1 is added to allow reciprocity with 49CFR for “One-time Movement” of non-conforming means of containment.

Schedules

Schedule 1: Classes 1-9, Shipping Descriptions

New UN numbers have been added for: Class 1.4C Rocket Motors (UN0510); Class 4.1 Polyester Resin Kits, solid based (Class 4.1); moving “engines” shipped uninstalled from UN3166 (Class 9) and re-assigning them to UN3528, UN3529 or UN3530 (Classes 2.1, 3 or 9) depending on the fuel; four types of Class 4.1 Polymerizing Substances (solid or liquid, stabilized or not) using UN3531 to UN3534- assigned to PG III.

Alternate shipping names have been added to UN0014, UN3151 and UN3152.

Various changes have been made to SP references in Column 5 resulting from additions/changes arising from the harmonization process.

93 existing UN number entries have had modifications to referenced SP.

Schedule 2: Special Provisions

In addition to specific SP referenced in earlier paragraphs above, there have been removal of some Schedule 2 SP that are now covered in updated standards or formalized in other parts.

New SP have been added for new listings and other changes.

Changes involving the addition of new SP include:

  • clarification of the shipping name for UN3314 (SP152);
  • stabilization considerations for various DG (SP155);
  • clarifying vehicle requirements after the separation of “engines” from UN3166 (SP 156 and 157);
  • an exemption for adsorbed gases (SP158); the extension for implementing the lithium battery Class 9 label/placard (SP159);
  • an exemption for celluloid (UN2000), formed into table tennis balls (SP160);
  • a requirement to cool aluminum smelting/remelting by-products (UN3170) before packaging into ventilated, water-resistant containers (SP161);
  • specifying the conditions for Uranium hexafluoride in “excepted package” (UN3507) markings (SP162);
  • exemptions from training, reporting for matches (UN1944 and UN1945) in outer packaging of 25kg or less gross mass (SP163);
  • restrictions on packing certain other DG with specified (UN2814, UN2900, UN3373) DG in Class 6.2 (SP164);
  • allowing empty UN3373 packaging to be marked without being considered misleading (SP165);
  • requiring specified UN numbers with inhalation toxicity to be re-assigned to generic “Toxic Inhalation …” names/UN numbers (SP166);
  • clarification of the conditions for allowing use of “DG in Apparatus/Machinery” (UN3363) and the applicable exemptions (SP167);
  • and an exemption from ERAP/SP23 requirements for lower sulphur dioxide contents of fuming sulphuric acid (UN1831)

Schedule 3

Changes have been made to Schedule 3 as a result of Schedule 1 and IMDG updates.

New entries for 13 shipping names (2 of which are assigned “P” in Column 4) and 18 technical names appear in Schedule 3 as a result of Schedule 1 and IMDG updates.

As well 56 existing entries, representing 42 shipping names, are now flagged as marine pollutants by addition of “P” to Column 4.

Transition:

The rail car provisions referenced in section 163 of the CGII notice are in effect on publication (i.e. July 12, 2017). Except as noted regarding SP34 and SP159 above (Lithium Battery Class 9 and handling mark), the deadline to comply with the remaining changes is January 12, 2018.

The official published version from Canada Gazette II is available here »

Transport Canada Clear Language Reference Material »


HO! HO! HO! TDG Under the Tree – Proposed Harmonization

Transport Canada Prepares to Adopt 2016 Updates to Standards

World Hepatitis Day Logo
World Hepatitis Day

Eliminate Hepatitis Banner

Are your Signs Accurate?

Since 2010, World Hepatitis Day is observed on July 28th. The goal is to raise awareness of hepatitis as well as the prevention and treatment of the disease. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), an estimated 1.34 million people died globally from this disease in 2015. In comparison, numbers that high match those caused by tuberculosis, malaria, and HIV/AIDS. According to the World Hepatitis Day website, “Currently, 90% of people living with hepatitis B and 80% living with hepatitis C are not aware of their status.” We all need to be educated. This is not a disease found in just one country or in one particular ethnicity. Here is the chance to educate ourselves. Check out the website dedicated to the even this year at http://www.worldhepatitisday.org/en/about-us

Hepatitis is the inflammation of liver tissue. It is most commonly caused by a virus and there are five main ones commonly referred to as Types A, B, C, D and E. Types A and E are usually short-term (acute) diseases. Types B, C, and D are likely to become chronic. Note that Type E is very dangerous for pregnant women.

Listed below are some key facts about each type of Hepatitis taken from the WHO website. For more information visit http://www.who.int/hepatitis/en/

Key Facts of Hepatitis Types

  • Type A – transmitted through ingestion of contaminated food and water or through direct contact with an infectious person. Almost everyone recovers from this Type. There is also a vaccine.
  • Type B – transmitted through contact with the blood or other body fluids of an infected person. This is a chronic infection with no cure. There is a vaccine for this Type.
  • Type C – transmitted through exposure to small quantities of blood. This can happen through injection drug use, unsafe injection practices, and unsafe health care. Certain individual’s own immune system will clear the infection. For others, antiviral medications can cure about 95% of others. Hepatitis C has no vaccine.
  • Type D – transmitted through contact with the blood or other body fluids of an infected person. There is no effective treatment and no vaccine. Infection with this virus cannot occur in the absence of the Hepatitis B virus. However, vaccinations against Hepatitis B is a good preventative measure to infection by Type D.
  • Type E – transmitted mainly through contaminated drinking water. It is a self-limiting infection that resolves itself in about two to six weeks. There is a vaccine developed in China, but is it not available elsewhere.

What does this mean for workers? Since many of these types are transmitted through bodily fluids including blood, they fall under OSHA’s purview. Under 29CFR 1910.1030, the Bloodborne Pathogen Standard, and the Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act of 2000 there are specific safeguards, trainings, labels, and signs that must be used in the workplace to prevent exposure to potentially infectious material. 

A link to the standard: https://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_id=10051&p_table=STANDARDS

ICC Compliance Center offers a full line of biohazard labels and signs that meet the OSHA standard. We also offer a training and full packaging line for shipments of these biological substances. Check us out today!

TDG
Transport Canada Prepares to Adopt 2016 Updates to Standards

Truck Driving on highway at sunset

IBC and Bio/Infectious Substances

Transport Canada (TC) published information on some significant changes to the latest editions of standards for design/manufacture/use of packaging for bio/infectious substances and Intermediate bulk containers (IBC); CGSB-43.125-2016 and CGSB-43.146-2016 respectively.

Moving Forward

The notices are presumably to give advance warning of changes to ambulatory (“dynamic”) references as indicated in the CG (Canada Gazette) I “International Harmonization Amendment” to the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations (TDGR) expected, according to usually reliable sources, to be formalized by publication in the July 12 edition of CGII.

See also the author’s earlier Blog on the CGI proposal »

These will replace the currently references, in TDGR Part 1.3.1, to the 2002 and 1999 editions respectively. TDGR 5.16 will also be amended as the information appears in the 2016 edition of CGSB-43.125.

Summaries Available

Transport Canada qualifies their information, cautioning the regulated community to carefully read the standards themselves to ensure they are aware of all changes as some may not be covered in the TC summaries. Although not mentioned directly in this TC material, rumour (again the “usually reliable sources”) has it that there will be a 6-month transition to comply with new editions of revised standards that have ambulatory references in the July 12 amendment.

The summaries highlighting changes in the standards are available on the TC website:
http://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/tdg/moc-infectious-cgsb43125-1309.html
http://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/tdg/moc-ibc-cgsb43146-1308.html

Access to CGSB Standards

Fortunately (unlike other and earlier versions), the actual pdf of these standards themselves can be downloaded at no charge from the Public Works & Procurement Services (PWPS) Canada website:
https://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/ongc-cgsb/programme-program/normes-standards/internet/index-eng.html

HO! HO! HO! TDG Under the Tree – Proposed Harmonization

ICC Compliance Center
New Product: Automotive Airbag Shipper

We are pleased to announce the following addition to our product line: PK-17SPAIR Automotive Air Bag Shipper

Description:

This Automotive Air Bag shipper has been tested to meet the requirements of shipping airbag modules. Simply wrap the unit in bubble wrap (included), add packing peanuts and apply all the necessary labels.

For more information or to purchase this product, visit our website.

IATA
IATA Expresses Concerns Over Laptop Ban

Laptop on wood table

Rethinking the Laptop Ban

Back in March, The United States Government implemented a ban on carry-on electronic devices on certain airlines from the Middle East and Africa to the U.S. due to security fears of a potential bomb threat. However, IATA recently called for the government to re-think this current policy as it has opened up an array of financial concerns for the affected airlines.

Financial Concerns

Since the ban on laptops in carry-on baggage was initiated in March, airlines are finding implementation of the ban has been a financial burden. In addition, governments did not consult with IATA, which gave airlines little time to implement the ban. As passengers are now forced to check their laptop computers, the affected airlines had to increase the training of the current staff as well deploy extra staff due to the increased handling of cargo hold baggage. In addition, the affected airlines fear that companies will cancel trips rather than risk losing confidential information in checked laptops, causing a potential decrease in business customers.

It is estimated that the ban affects more than 18,000 daily passengers, in particular Gulf carriers and airports have noted a drop in passenger traffic between their hubs and the United States. There is certainly a risk of affected airlines losing frustrated passengers to other carriers not affected by the ban. From a systematic point of view, the ban has caused slower moving security lines at the airports due to more thorough baggage screening measures, triggering a surge in departure delays. In the ban’s current scope, IATA has estimated that the ban could cost $180 million in lost productivity, which could increase to $1.2 billion if the ban is eventually expanded to Europe-US flights.

Airport security, laptop ban

Alternatives to Banning Devices

IATA is recommending various alternatives to potentially replace the current ban. These recommendations include the use of explosive trace detection at primary and secondary security checkpoints, visual inspection of electronic devices for signs of any alterations, questioning passengers about the purpose and origin of the device, the possibility of turning on the device to help determine its functionality, the deployment of “behavioral detection” officers and canines, recognition of trusted traveler programs and the identification of high or low-risk passengers, and increased training for screeners to detect potential threats from electronic devices and laptops.

It is unknown whether or not IATA’s recommendations will ever come to fruition. In the meantime, we will have to wait and see how long this ban will be in affect and how much it will cost the carriers in the long run.

Sources

http://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/air-transport/2017-05-17/iata-urges-restraint-possible-new-electronics-ban

https://www.businesstraveller.com/news/2017/06/07/iata-appeals-alternatives-laptop-ban/

http://www.news.com.au/world/breaking-news/us-mulls-banning-more-electronics-in-air/news-story/58f268e2ee31224979f67853efead8dc

https://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/air-transport/2017-06-08/unanswered-questions-over-electronics-ban-irk-iata

Air – TDG Part 12 Pre-Amendment Consultation

Ground and air transport

Time Flies

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.

Related Posts

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 three (3) consecutive months per year.”

The journey would not be restricted to a specific time of year. However, a journey from a non-limited access location, to a second non-limited access location, ending at a third limited access location, can only apply a Limited Access exemption provision between the second and third destination. The first to second flight must comply (an example is given in the White Paper, with further clarification in Annex B “Details…” to the White Paper).

Another clarification in the proposal is to reinforce the carrier’s “consignor” responsibilities when accepting shipments under Limited Access exemption.

Changes – Additions – Deletions

No section of the current TDG Part 12 is untouched by this proposal. In addition to clarifying Limited Access criteria and other modifications, new provisions are proposed for: “animal repellants” (e.g. bear spray), UN3012 “signal cartridges” (e.g. “bear bangers”), DG required to provide emergency services or aerial fire suppression, DG for operation of an aircraft, or DG transported by peace officer in the exercise of duties.

Some provisions considered redundant, or excessively exempted, under current IATA TI that may be removed include the current sections: 12.6 (toxic and infectious substances), 12.8 (Packing Instruction Y963), 12.9(12) (sodium chlorite and hypochlorite solutions), 12.11 (geological core samples), 12.13 (measuring instruments). Some existing “Equivalency Certificates” will be withdrawn as a result of changes formalizing the exemption in the proposed amendment.

Interested parties have until August 8, 2017 to provide input to this pre-Gazette I proposal. The Gazette I notice is expected to be published by early 2018.

Annex B to the White Paper provides a fairly readable map to the changes. The link below introduces the proposal, and contains further links to the White Paper, Annexes, background documents and feedback options:

http://www.letstalktransportation.ca/part12air

TDG
Transport Canada Publishes Enforcement Action Summaries

Truck Driving on highway at sunset

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:

  1. Detention (of goods) notices
  2. Direction to remedy (non-compliances)
  3. Direction to “not import” or return DG to the point of origin
  4. Revocation of certificates
  5. Tickets (fines)
  6. Convictions (“guilty in court”)

Initial Offering

The current summary covers 24 enforcement actions from the period December 2014 to April 13, 2017, with the intent to update the list monthly. The list has basic sorting features and, when actions are directed at corporations under consequences d)-f) above, disclose names of the offender. Individuals (non-corporate offenders) are not named.

Of the 24 listings: 11 resulted in detention notices, 6 had tickets (ranging from $575 to $900), 5 were directions to remedy deficiencies and 2 were under stop import/return directions.

4 of the listings disclosed the names of corporations and only was the result of a ticket- i.e. presumably 5 of the tickets were issued to individuals.

The majority of the offences were related to TDGR Part 5 (“means of containment) violations (14), with 6 of these pertaining specifications and general requirements for highway tanks under CSA B-621. Documentation deficiencies were cited in 2 ($615 and $900) of the tickets issued.

Avoiding running afoul of regulations is avoided by obtaining knowledge of the content of the regulations with awareness of how they relate to a company’s or individual’s activities. Maintaining compliance also requires keeping abreast of changes that have a potential effect on the activities.

To consult the enforcement summary page at Transport Canada’s website, click on the link below:

http://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/tdg/enforcement-actions-summaries.html

If you have any questions regarding the Transport Canada Enforcement Action Summaries, please contact ICC Compliance Center, Inc. at 1.888.442.9628 (USA) or 1.888.977.4834 (Canada).

WHMIS 2015
WHMIS 2015 Delayed Implications

Young female Industrial Worker

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.

RIAS

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.

CBI

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 . . . some companies protected their CBI…by disclosing…ranges rather than using the . . . HMIRA.” I recall the discussions in the early days of WHMIS 1988 and, although unfortunately I don’t have copies, some documented acceptance of the practise as an alternate to the HMIRA as long as it wasn’t abused.

The stated main purpose of the extension is to allow Health Canada some time to prepare a palatable alternative to the WHMIS 1988 concentration ranges – which some in the regulated community have dubbed “CBI Light”. “CBI Light” presumably could allow for ranges, albeit narrower than in WHMIS 1988, and restrict their use for higher hazard “CMRs” (carcinogens, mutagens, reproductive toxins and sensitizers of the respiratory tract) as discussed in the “Consultation” section of the RIAS.

“WHMIS 2017”?

The RIAS includes the thought that some other stakeholder issues could be considered as part of the review. Chief among these is Labour’s desire to bring excluded products (e.g. consumer products and manufactured articles) under the WHMIS umbrella. Given the heavy discussions (again the writer attended some of these in the early 2000’s as an active member of regulated industry) that took place to introduce WHMIS 2015 (the original goal was for 2003!) – I suspect the issues around incorporating the Hazardous Products Act s. 12 exclusions may not come to fruition during the CBI discussions.

Suppliers Beware!

A significant number of suppliers have progressed far enough along the WHMIS 2015 trail that the transition will not have a serious impact on their transition. However, those who have not completely transitioned need to keep in mind that the CGII notice did not change the transition philosophy that prevents “mixing and matching” between WHMIS 1988 and WHMIS 2015 requirements. i.e. Labels and SDS must correspond- as must labels and MSDS. Classification differences could also be problematic if warnings on “GHS” labels were not reflected in WHMIS 1988 MSDS. Similarly, the “expiry” dates on MSDS would still apply to supplies under the older system. Prolonging the transition potentially prolongs the opportunity for non-compliance.

The transition extension does presumably provide for some relief on direct shipments where the Canadian supplier could still take advantage of the exemption, in the CPR s.23, to have (with written agreement) the customer label the material on receipt.

Employers Ditto (Sigh …)

The RIAS “Consultation” section indicates that some employer stakeholders were concerned that extending the transition for suppliers would, in effect, decrease the implementation window for workplaces. This interpretation indicates a false sense of complacency in the “employer” community’s need to establish training and procedures for WHMIS 2015.

As the Health Canada naming conveys, the GHS-based system has been “legal” for use since the CGII adoption in February 2015. Proactive companies, particularly those with significant US customers (US HazCom 2012 was, after all, mandatory in 2015), may already supply to WHMIS 2015 requirements.

The majority of Federal/Provincial/Territorial (FPT) jurisdictions have updated their workplace regulations. Despite the FPT transition provisions, the expectation is that employers will, at minimum, train employees in WHMIS 2015 sooner if products received are supplied under the new system.

Why Wait?

It would seem only prudent to undertake WHMIS 2015 training well before the “official” workplace implementation date. Items outlined as under review in the RIAS are unlikely to require significant changes to employee awareness requirements in understanding the new GHS-based classification, labelling and SDS aspects.

The May 31 CGII contains 2 separate notices: SOR/2017-92 for the new June 1, 2018 manufacturer/importer deadline; and SOR/2017-93 for the September 1, 2018 distributor deadline. The former contains the RIAS for both notices, found under the above SOR (referencing ‘Order Fixing . . . Economic Action Plan 2014″) at:

http://www.gazette.gc.ca/rp-pr/p2/2017/2017-05-31/html/index-eng.php

If you have any questions regarding WHMIS 2015 implementation, please contact ICC Compliance Center, Inc. at 1.888.442.9628 (USA) or 1.888.977.4834 (Canada).


WHMIS 2015 – June 2017 Deadline Extended

Safety Data Sheets (SDS)
Consumer Chemical Products and GHS SDS Requirements

Consumer chemical bottles

Do My Products Need a SDS?

Determining which of your consumer chemical products would require a GHS Safety Data Sheet (SDS), can sometimes be difficult and confusing. Which products actually do need to have compliant SDS, can differ depending on which country/region you are in, and how the product is being used.

Canada

In Canada, chemical products that are labeled, packaged, and sold at retail outlets as consumer products, are regulated by the Canadian Consumer Product Safety Act (CCPSA), and the Consumer Chemicals and Containers Regulations 2001 (CCCR 2001). Examples of ‘retail’ outlets are stores such as Canadian Tire, Home Depot, Rona, and corner gas stations that anyone off the street can walk into and buy chemical products in, etc.

Chemical products, which are intended for use in worksites and not sold at retail outlets, on the other hand, are regulated by the Hazardous Products Act (HPA) and Hazardous Products Regulations (HPR, or “WHMIS 2015“). It is the HPA and HPR (WHMIS 2015), where GHS SDS requirements are found, while the CCPSA and CCCR 2001 do not currently contain any SDS requirements at all.

In the HPA, in Part II, Section 12(j) and Schedule 1, CCPSA consumer products are actually excluded from the application of the HPA’s requirements.

What does this exclusion mean?

Keep in mind that the CCPSA and CCCR 2001 do not contain any SDS requirements, while the HPA and HPR (WHMIS 2015) do. As a result of the exclusion in the HPA, the HPA and HPR do not apply to consumer chemical products in Canada. As such, these consumer chemical products do not require SDSs (since SDS requirements are in the HPA and HPR), provided the products are labeled, packaged and sold at retail outlets in accordance with the CCPSA and CCCR 2001.

Legally, the proportion of sales in each of the respective sales markets (consumer vs. workplace), is not relevant. Sales to worksites (e.g. direct to contractors) could be, for example, 90% of the product’s total sales, while sales to retail outlets could constitute only 10% of the product’s total sales. As long as the product is in the same container size in both markets, and the product is labeled/packaged according to consumer rules, and it is available for sale in retail outlets, then the HPR (WHMIS 2015) does not apply. This means GHS SDS are not required, even when the majority of sales are to worksites. Providing GHS SDS is totally optional for a supplier in this case. It’s completely up to the business relationships a company may have with their own customers, on deciding whether or not to provide GHS SDS.

Key points for this exclusion from SDS requirements, however, is whether or not the product container is actually ‘sold at retail outlets’, and the sizes of containers. Consider a company selling one product in two container sizes (for example a 1 quart / 946 mL size and a 5 gallon / 18.9 L size). The 1 quart / 946 mL size is sold in retail outlets such as Home Depot, as well as direct to worksites. The 5 gallon / 18.9 L size, is ONLY being sold direct to worksites and contractors with special licenses, for example. In this case, the customer would require a GHS SDS to accompany the 5 gallon / 18.9 L size, since this container size is NOT sold at retail outlets.

The United States

There is a similar exclusion in the US from the Occupational Safety & Health Administration’s (OSHA) GHS requirements for consumer products, however, there is a difference in how the consumer product is treated, depending on what the frequency or manner of use of the product is.

Chemical products, which are intended for use in worksites and which are not sold at retail outlets, are regulated by OSHA in the 29CFR 1910.1200 standard for hazard communication (Hazcom 2012). The OSHA Hazcom 2012 standard states that

This section does not apply to:

(ix) Any consumer product … where the employer can show that it is used in the workplace for the purpose intended by the chemical manufacturer or importer of the product, and the use results in a duration and frequency of exposure which is not greater than the range of exposures that could reasonably be experienced by consumers when used for the purpose intended [29 CFR 1910.1200(b)(6)(ix)].

OSHA goes onto provide an example, in the frequently asked questions (FAQs) section of their website, which involves Windex. Windex is commonly used by both retail customers in their homes, as well as, for example, by Janitors who use the products in their workplaces only. If the janitor uses the Windex in exactly the same way the retail customer would at home, and no more frequently than that retail customer would, then there are no OSHA Hazcom 2012 GHS requirements for the product, and a GHS SDS is not required.

But, if that Janitor uses the Windex 5 or 6 days a week for hours at a time each day, this usage is significantly more frequent than how a user at home would use the product. In this case, there would be OSHA Hazcom 2012 requirements and a GHS SDS would be required.

The European Union (EU)

In the EU, REACH [Regulation (EC) No. 1907/2006 concerning the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals] requires suppliers to provide SDS for certain substances and mixtures. It also states in Title IV, Article 31, Section 4, that:

The safety data sheet need not be supplied where hazardous substances or mixtures offered or sold to the general public are provided with sufficient information to enable users to take the necessary measures as regards the protection of human health, safety and the environment, unless requested by a downstream user or distributor.

The difference here for consumer products (ie., sold to the general public), is that at any time, a downstream user or distributor may request an SDS for a consumer product…and it must be supplied to them. Initially, a supplier could just provide other means of giving sufficient information on the products’ hazards and safe use (e.g. instruction booklets, labels, technical data sheets). But at any time, if requested, an SDS would have to be provided.

For further information

For further information on European and North American regulations, please consult the following website links:

Europe:

https://echa.europa.eu/safety-data-sheets

United States:

https://www.osha.gov/dsg/hazcom/index.html

Canada, for workplace products:

http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ewh-semt/occup-travail/whmis-simdut/index-eng.php

Canada, for consumer product:

http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/cps-spc/index-eng.php

If you have any questions regarding GHS or consumer product requirements, please contact ICC Compliance Center, Inc. at 1.888.442.9628 (USA) or 1.888.977.4834 (Canada).

Safety
National Forklift Safety Day – June 13

Forklift

Forklift Safety

There’s an old joke out there about what happens when you play a country song backwards. According to the joke you get your girl, dog, and truck back. Rascal Flatts even did a song about it. It is a pretty good tune. Take a listen here.

So, how does a song about getting a truck back relate to forklifts and forklift safety? Well, by definition a forklift is a powered industrial truck. Since the joke and song talks about trucks you can see the connection. Forklifts are used to lift, move, and place various materials weighing anywhere from a few thousand pounds up to 90 tons. These powered industrial trucks must comply with OSHA standard 29CFR 1910.178. You can access a copy of the standard at this link.

National Forklift Safety Day

In 2016, accidents and incidents involving powered industrial trucks were listed in the top ten OSHA violations. To stress the safe use of the vehicles, need for operator training, education of non-users the Industrial Truck Association (ITA) has set aside Tuesday, June 13 as National Forklift Safety Day. This is the fourth year for such an event. Having a written standard, good safety policies and regulations surrounding the safe use of these machines isn’t enough. It requires every day awareness and commitment from drivers, managers, and other personnel in the areas with these trucks to stay safe.

If you are in the Washington, DC area check out the free activities ITA has planned.

  • Monday, June 12 from 3 to 5 p.m.: Education session for ITA members and invited quests
  • Tuesday, June 13 morning: Speakers from industry and government, including elected officials
  • Tuesday, June 13 afternoon: ITA members will visit their congressional representatives to convey our message about the critical importance of workplace safety and discuss how elected officials can help to support that

For information regarding your area, contact your local forklift dealer. 

A few ideas from other locations include the following:

  • Safety pledge signings
  • Open houses and plant tours
  • Safety demonstrations / Safety Awareness classes
  • “Train the Trainer” classes
  • Operator training sessions

If there is any way ICC Compliance Center can help make your National Forklift Safety Day a success, contact us. We are here to help.