REGISTRATION and FINES and FAQs, OH MY!
February and March contain some interesting items potentially impacting the Canadian TDG landscape…
Transport Canada, through a consultation notice published in late February, has solicited input from stakeholders on a plan to require those who handle/offer for transport, transport or import dangerous goods to register with Transport Canada.
The premise is that, “… public safety depends” on Transport Canada knowing who is transporting DG, including where, when, and how much. The main thrust of this proposal seems to be for targeting enforcement and consultation activities.
The proposal as currently presented does not appear to distinguish among the size, frequency, or nature of DG involved; and will require period re-registration with submission of data to the “Client Information Database” (CID).
There’s nothing in the posted information to indicate whether there will be a cost to “clients” for registration, in addition to the record-keeping burden they will bear.
(For those familiar with the 49 CFR §107 (Subpart G) requirement, intended to subsidize government response activities, this TDG version does not serve the same purpose.)
The only exemptions currently contemplated, extend to those falling under a TDGR Part 1 “special case” exemption. This contrasts with 49 CFR’s registration which has exemptions based on load sizes and hazard types.
The TC proposal and comment provisions are found at:
While not directly cited in the Transport Canada TDG Act or regulations, 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…
Violations & Fines
We have all had this experience: We are driving in our car on a long stretch of highway or a small suburban road and it happens.
We notice a flashing light in our rear view mirrors and we are pulled over by a friendly neighborhood member of law enforcement.
As you go into a brief moment of anger and confusion, you realize most likely this is going to result in a hit to your pocketbook. As the old saying goes, “You do the crime, you do the time.” In this case it is in the form of a check or money order. Following the regulations for the transportation of dangerous goods is certainly no exception. The world’s largest internet-based retailer is finding this out. Recently, Amazon has been hit with a $78,000 fine by the FAA for violating its Hazardous Materials Regulations.
When a package containing a highly flammable liquid began leaking en route to its destination, it was found to have no markings or labels and was also missing required paperwork. This incident is just one of numerous shipping violations Amazon has had within the last several years, totaling approximately $872,000 in fines.
Penalties Have Become More Severe
Since the ValueJet Disaster in 1996, The FAA has taken a far more aggressive approach in the regulations of dangerous goods resulting in substantial fines for offenders. The FAA can Continue Reading…
The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has increased the potential penalties for failing to comply with the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR).
Under Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations (49 CFR), hazardous materials must be transported in accordance the rules set out in Parts 100-185 of the HMR. Failing to follow these minimum standards can result in serious risk to the public, as well as environmental and property damage. Therefore, the potential penalties for lack of compliance must be appropriate. These penalties are set by Congress, but must be reflected in the HMR itself. Civil penalties are fines; there are criminal penalties involving prison sentences for violations that are “willful or reckless”.
Penalties must be kept current, and reflect not only inflationary changes, but also the government’s concern ab that the regulations are taken seriously by stakeholders. Therefore, on July 6, 2012, the U.S. Congress revised the maximum and minimum civil penalties for a “knowing violation” of the Federal hazardous material transportation law, or legal requirements under that law, such as regulations, special permits, inspectors’ orders or special approvals issued under that law. Details on these new penalties may be found in 49 U.S.C. 5123(a). The new penalties take effect on violations that occurred on or after October 1, 2012.
To follow Congress’ lead, PHMSA issued a Final Rule ([Docket No. PHMSA–2012–0257 (HM–258)], RIN 2137–AE96) on April 17, Continue Reading…
According to OSHA the Most Frequently Cited Standards
The following were the top 10 most frequently cited standards in fiscal year 2012 (October 1, 2011 through September 30, 2012):
- Fall protection, construction (29 CFR 1926.501) [related OSHA Safety and Health Topics page]
- Hazard communication standard, general industry (29 CFR 1910.1200) [related OSHA Safety and Health Topics page]
- Scaffolding, general requirements, construction (29 CFR 1926.451) [related OSHA Safety and Health Topics page]
- Respiratory protection, general industry (29 CFR 1910.134) [related OSHA Safety and Health Topics page]
- Control of hazardous energy (lockout/tagout), general industry (29 CFR 1910.147) [related OSHA Safety and Health Topics page]
- Powered industrial trucks, general industry (29 CFR 1910.178) [related OSHA Safety and Health Topics page]
- Electrical, wiring methods, components and equipment, general industry (29 CFR 1910.305) [related OSHA Safety and Health Topics page]
- Ladders, construction (29 CFR 1926.1053) [related OSHA Safety and Health Topics page]
- Machines, general requirements, general industry (29 CFR 1910.212) [related OSHA Safety and Health Topics page]
- Electrical systems design, general requirements, general industry (29 CFR 1910.303) [related OSHA Safety and Health Topics page]
The following are the standards for which OSHA assessed the highest penalties in fiscal year 2012 (October 1, 2011 through September 30, 2012):
- Fall protection, construction (29 CFR 1926.501) [related OSHA Safety Continue Reading…