St. John's

Dangerous Goods

Tuesday, July 6, 2004


Introductory Remarks and Presentation of the TDG Act and the Review Process

Mr. Raymond Auclair, Director of Research Evaluation and Systems, Transport Dangerous Goods, opened the meeting with a presentation on the TDG Act and the purpose and procedures of the review.

Here is a copy of the slide presentation on the Review and the Act used by Mr. Auclair.

Items Discussed

Following the presentation period, there was time reserved for questions and answers. We received questions and comments about the TDG Act, the TDG Regulations, the program and the review process itself. We have tried to summarize the topics in this list. Some portions of the answers were added after the fact for the purposes of encouraging.

D-3. All words defined in section 2 of the Act (and any word used in the Act).

Meaning of “misleading” should be reviewed.
In the case of “standardized means of containment”, how does the TDG Act cover the situation where the quality of a container has been modified by a person other than the manufacturer and transporter, or the resulting damage?

E-5. Links with other programs.

Some participants indicated that the multitude of acts that apply is confusing, for example the segregation rules applied one way during transport but differently before and after transport. One of the examples offered dealt with the obligation to use separate ships (or voyages) for two containers that, however, were together on the wharf and end up one on top of the other at destination on the oil rig.

Discussion included the possibility of proposing codes of practice to cover a sector of the industry, in which apparent conflicts could be resolved. For example, one could have a unified segregation rule to cover warehousing, storage on the wharf, transport on the ship and storage on the oil rig. See issue B-14.

E-5 Links with other programs (C-45 of the Criminal Code). Participants were concerned with the implications of C-45 on the TDG Act.

The Criminal Code and the TDG Act are applicable and can be used at the same time by the crown for any given infraction. However, the TDG Act and C-45 do not have the same burden of proof. For example:

TDG Act: Was there an accident or damages caused by an infraction? Were you responsible for the infraction?

Criminal Code: Are there indications that the infraction, accident or damage was caused by your action or your willful negligence?

F-5. Misleading Safety Marks. The participants confirmed being told by enforcement agencies that the use of a placard, when there is less than 500 kg of dangerous goods constitutes an infraction.


Training Requirements. Participants were concerned with an employer's interpretation of an acceptable amount of training. It was expressed that this is an area of concern because the TDG Act does not provide specific criteria.

We explained why TDG does not approve or disapprove any forms of training. According to articles 38, 39 and 40, the legislator wanted employer responsibility. It is the employer that can be liable in the event of an infraction made by an employee. The Act does not give a minimal standard; in practice, a court can conclude that the training was insufficient simply by noting how and why an infraction took place.

Moreover, if an activity falls under the jurisdiction of several acts, it may be that there are several training requirements that apply, some with standards, others without.

We have once thought of preparing a handbook of training objectives, from which an employer could establish (by filling in the blanks) his training requirements. But the preparation of such a tool requires resources.

Permits. Is the permit system designed to allow permits to be used indefinitely, or to be single use?

There are all kinds of permits. There are some that are renewed, others that serve only once. The only important point is that there is an equivalent level of safety. Some permits can possibly become general and are implemented in the regulations, whereas others require conditions that do not lend themselves to a general application.

Important Dates for the Review. Participants inquired when the bill would be submitted to Parliament. If we consider the nine steps of the consultation process, the bill is step 12. If everything proceeds at a normal pace, the expected timeline of the process is as follows:

August 2004:
We begin formulating possible solutions
October 2004:
New round of meetings to discuss issues and options
November 9, 2004:
Last public consultation meeting
Winter 2004-2005:
Inter-departmental consultation
April 2005:
Memo to the Minister of Transport
Summer 2005:
Memo to Cabinet
September 2005:
Draft Bill to the House of Commons


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