Shipping Infectious Substances

RDIMS #10041909
September 2016

PDF Version

TABLE OF CONTENT

This bulletin explains the requirements related to the transportation of infectious substances. It does not change, create, amend or suggest deviations to the Transportation of Dangerous Goods (TDG) Regulations. For specific details, consult the TDG Regulations.

Overview

What is an infectious substance?

An infectious substance is defined under Section 1.4 of the TDG Regulations. Basically, it’s a micro-organism that is known or reasonably believed to cause disease in humans or animals. The infectious substance might be contained in blood, tissue, organs, body fluids, vaccines or cultures.

You can find a list of infectious substances in Part 2 of the TDG Regulations under Appendix 3.

Note: Appendix 3 is NOT a complete list. If a substance is not listed in Appendix 3, it is still considered an infectious substance when it exhibits characteristics similar to an infectious substance on the list.

As a consignor (i.e. shipper), what are my responsibilities?

As a consignor, you must comply with the requirements related to:

Note 1: Placarding applies to the person transporting the infectious substance or to the person loading the vehicle or large means of containment.
Note 2: The primary class placard must be displayed when infectious substances are transported unless the placarding exemption is used and no ERAP is required (Section 4.16.1).
Note 3: Placards and UN number are required when the shipment is transported in a large means of containment and it requires an ERAP in accordance with Part 7 of the TDG Regulations.

Do other government departments regulate infectious substances?

Yes. The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) administers regulations that apply to laboratory safety and the importation of human pathogens in Canada. Provincial governments may have additional regulations that pertain to infectious substances, as well.

Learn more at: www.phac-aspc.gc.ca

Training

Do I need TDG Training?

Always assume you need training. The only time training is NOT required is when you are using an exemption (i.e. special case) which exempts you from Part 6 or when the substance is believed not to be infectious. You will find most exemptions in Part 1 of the TDG Regulations from Sections 1.15 to 1.49.

Who issues the training certificate?

Employers are responsible for issuing a training certificate once their employee has received adequate training.

Is there a standard format for the training certificate?

No. However, the certificate must contain all of the information required by Section 6.3 of the TDG Regulations. Even though there is no standard format, we have a sample in our TDG Bulletin titled: “TDG Bulletin - TDG Training”.

Classification

How do I classify an infectious substance?

Infectious substances are classified as Class 6.2 (Infections Substances) dangerous goods. Class 6.2 has two categories: A or B. Category A is the most dangerous. You can only use four UN numbers for infectious substances.

Category A

  • UN2814 – INFECTIOUS SUBSTANCE, AFFECTING HUMANS
  • UN2900 – INFECTIOUS SUBSTANCE, AFFECTING ANIMALS only

Category B

  • UN3373 – BIOLOGICAL SUBSTANCE, CATEGORY B

Medical or Clinical Waste

  • UN2814 – INFECTIOUS SUBSTANCE, AFFECTING HUMANS, if they contain Category A infectious substances.
  • UN2900 – INFECTIOUS SUBSTANCE, AFFECTING ANIMALS only, if they contain Category A infectious substances.
  • UN3291– CLINICAL WASTE, UNSPECIFIED, N.O.S., (BIO) MEDICAL WASTE, N.O.S. or REGULATED MEDICAL WASTE, N.O.S., if the shipper has reasonable grounds to believe that they have a low probability of containing infectious substances.

You can find a list of regulated infectious substances in Part 2 of the TDG Regulations under Appendix 3.

Are all human or animal specimens regulated as infectious substances?

Human or animal specimens are exempted from certain parts of the TDG Regulations if you have no reason to believe that the specimen contains an infectious substance. You can ship such specimens using the exemption under Section 1.42 of the TDG Regulations.

Human or animal specimens are fully regulated if you have reason to believe that the specimen contains micro-organisms included in class 6.2. If this is the case, it should be classified as a Class 6.2 and assigned to Category A or B. Furthermore, even if a person has no previous history or symptoms of infection, a specimen should be classified as a Class 6.2 when you are shipping it for testing of a known and regulated infectious substance. This only applies when the medical professional has valid reasons for conducting the tests. For example, the patient may have been in contact with an infectious substance.

However, if the specimens are part of routine screening tests, then they may be shipped as per Section 1.42, even when testing for an infectious substance. For example, an employer may wish to screen all new employees for infectious substances. In this case, you may ship the sample as “Exempt Human Specimen” if the medical professional has no reason to believe that the person has been in contact with an infectious substance.

What is “reason to believe”?

The term “reason to believe” means that there is sufficient belief to suggest that the specimens contain infectious substances included in Category A or B.

Professional judgment is required to determine if a specimen is regulated. Factors such as the known medical history, symptoms and individual circumstances of the source, human or animal, and endemic local conditions should be considered. For example, organizations that transport blood bags and tubes from blood donor clinics to laboratories should not automatically have a “reason to believe” that the blood collected contains infectious substances.

I don’t want to violate doctor / patient confidentiality. Are there any exemptions that apply to shipping samples that I suspect or know contain infectious substances?

No. However, the TDG Regulations do not require you to include a patient’s name or any personal reference when shipping infectious substances.

If you ship a known or suspected infectious substance without the proper labelling or documentation, you could be fined up to $50,000 or sentenced to 2 years in prison.

Are sharps or infectious wastes regulated?

Yes. If the medical or clinical waste (sharps, soiled linen, etc.) contain Category A infectious substances, you must assign UN2814 or UN2900.

If the medical or clinical waste contain Category B infectious substances or if the shipper has reasonable grounds to believe that they have a low probability of containing infectious substances, you must assign UN3291.

Who can we contact if we need assistance for classifying infectious substances?

Contact the Public Health Agency of Canada – Office of Laboratory Security:

May I ever ship Category A infectious substances as Category B?

Subsection 2.36(2) of the TDG Regulations states that certain Category A infectious substances may be shipped as a Category B. This does NOT apply to Category A infectious substances that are in the form of a culture or any infectious substance listed under Subsection 2.36(3).

Below is a list of the 19 infectious substances that you MUST always ship as Category A.

TABLE 1

Name of Infectious Substance UN Number
  • (a) Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic fever virus;
  • (b) Ebola virus;
  • (c) Flexal virus;
  • (d) Guanarito virus;
  • (e) Hantaviruses causing hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome;
  • (f) Hantaviruses causing pulmonary syndrome;
  • (g) Hendra virus;
  • (h) Herpes B virus (Cercopithecine Herpesvirus-1);
  • (i) Junin virus;
  • (j) Kyasanur Forest virus;
  • (k) Lassa virus;
  • (l) Machupo virus;
  • (m) Marburg virus;
  • (n) Monkeypox virus;
  • (o) Nipah virus;
  • (p) Omsk hemorrhagic fever virus;
  • (q) Russian Spring – Summer encephalitis virus;
  • (r) Sabia virus; and
  • (s) Variola (smallpox virus).
UN2814

Packaging

What type of packaging may I use to ship infectious substances?

There are three types of packaging that you may use:

  • Type 1A;
  • Type 1B (must also comply with Section 5.16.1 of the TDG Regulations); or
  • Type 1C.

Below is a table that summarizes when to use a given type of packaging.

Type of Packaging
UN Number — Category
Type 1A
  • UN2814 – Category A
  • UN2900 – Category A
  • UN3373 – Category B
  • UN3291 – Waste
Type 1B
  • UN3373 – Category B (including Category A infectious substances that can be shipped as Category B).
Type 1C
  • Waste, except for the infectious substances listed in "TABLE 1" of this document or in column 4 of the table under Section 5.16.

What is a Type 1A packaging?

Type 1A packagings are required to be manufactured to the most stringent specifications and may be used for any infectious substances, even waste. You will find the requirements for the design, testing and marking of Type 1A containers in the CAN/CGSB-43.125 standard. Companies that manufacture type 1A packaging in Canada must have their design registered with Transport Canada.

Additional requirements are found in Section 4.2.2.1 of the standard when transporting infectious substances that are refrigerated, frozen, or in liquid nitrogen.

How do I identify a Type 1A packaging?

A Type 1A packaging will have UN marking on the outer packaging as set out in Section 4.9 of CAN/CGSB-43.125 standard. For example:

The United Nations packaging symbol. This image consists of a circle and inside the circle are the letters u and n, which are in lower case letters. The letter 'u' is in the upper portion of the circle and the letter 'n' is in the lower portion.
4G / CLASS 6.2 / 11
CAN / ABC 8-999
Code or symbol Description
The United Nations packaging symbol.  This image consists of a circle and inside the circle are the letters u and n, which are in lower case letters.  The letter “u” is in the upper portion of the circle and the letter “n” is in the lower portion. United Nations packaging symbol.
4G
or
4GU
Packaging code (in this example, 4G represents a fiberboard box).

The “U” represents that the package was tested with fragile primary receptacles.
CLASS 6.2 The text “CLASS 6.2” means that this type of container is suitable for Class 6.2 infectious substances.
11 The last two digits of the year of manufacture.
CAN The country authorizing the allocation of the marking.
ABC 8-999 The name or symbol of the manufacturer and other identification of the container as specified by the country authorizing the allocation of the mark (e.g., design registration number).

A Type 1A container is a triple packaging system consisting of:

  • watertight primary receptacle(s);
  • a watertight secondary packaging;
  • absorbent material; and
  • an outer packaging.

Type 1A packaging

Image of a Type 1A container, which is a triple packaging system.  The outer packaging is a UN Specification box, with UN specification marking. The box is also marked with a class 6.2 infectious substance label. Next to label is the shipping name 'infectious substance affecting humans', the UN number and the net quantity of infectious substance.  There are also labels for the consignor (i.e. shipper) and consignee and a label for the responsible person that includes their telephone number.  Finally, the outer packaging is labelled with an orientation label, which is two arrows pointing up. These arrows are only required for AIR and MARINE transport when the primary receptacle exceeds 50 ml or 50 g.  Placed inside the outer package is a secondary packaging, which is watertight. This secondary packaging is cylindrical in shape and has a screw on cap. The secondary packaging is affixed with a label that includes an itemized list of its contents.Finally, inside the secondary packaging is the primary receptacle, which is a test tube.  The test tube is surrounded by absorbent material.

Figure 1: Example of triple packaging system for the packaging and labelling of Category A infectious substances (Figure provided by IATA, Montreal, Canada)

What is a Type 1B packaging?

Type 1B packaging is typically used for UN3373 - Category B, but it can also be used for certain Category A infectious substances. However a Type 1B CANNOT be used for the infectious substances listed in "TABLE 1" of this document or in columns 3 or 4 of the table under Section 5.16. Category A infectious substances that are in the form of a culture cannot be transported in a Type 1B package. In these cases, a Type 1A must be used. You need to refer to Section 5.16 of the TDG Regulations for more details.

The performance requirements for Type 1B packaging are set out in Section 5.16.1 of the TDG Regulations. A Type 1B packaging must pass a 1.2 meter drop test. In addition, either the primary receptacle or secondary packaging must pass the 95 kPa pressure test.

There are construction requirements, but no performance requirements set out in CAN/CGSB-43.125 standard for Type 1B packaging.

How do I identify a Type 1B packaging?

The marking required on the outer packaging of a Type 1B container is specified in Section 5.3 of the CAN/CGSB-43.125 standard. The marking includes:

  • the text “TC-125-1B”; and
  • the name and address or symbol of the packaging manufacturer.

A Type 1B container is a triple packaging system consisting of:

  • watertight primary receptacle(s);
  • a watertight secondary packaging;
  • absorbent material; and
  • an outer packaging.

Notes:

  • Either the primary receptacle or secondary packaging must be capable of passing the 95 kPa pressure test when it contains a liquid.
  • All components are tested together as a system.

Image of a type 1B container, which is a triple packaging system.The outer packaging is a box that is labelled with the category B mark, which is a diamond shaped mark with the text 'UN3373' written inside. Also written on the box is the text TC-125-1B, and a package orientation label, which is two arrows pointing up.  Placed inside the outer packaging is a packing list and a secondary receptacle.  The secondary receptacle consists of a plastic bag placed inside a plastic fibre envelope, which together comply with the pressure requirements of 95 kilopascals (kPa).Inside the secondary receptacles are watertight primary receptacles, which are test tubes and with cushioning and absorbent material.

Figure 2: Example of type 1B packaging (images provided by Saf-T-Pak)

Below is another example of a Type 1B packaging.

Here is another image of a Type 1B packaging.The outer packaging is a box that is labelled with the category B mark, which is a diamond shaped mark with the text 'UN3373' written inside.  Next to label is the shipping name 'Biological Substances Category B'. Also written on the box is the text TC-125-1B and the 24 hour telephone number. There are also labels for the consignor (i.e. shipper) and consignee.  Placed inside the outer package is a secondary packaging, which is leakproof or siftproof. This secondary packaging is cylindrical in shape and has a screw on cap. The secondary packaging is affixed with a label that includes an itemized list of its contents.Inside the secondary receptacle is a rack-type holder made from styrofoam or sponge. This rack is holding the primary receptacles, which are test tubes and surrounded by cushioning and absorbent material.

Figure 3: Example of type 1B packaging (Figure provided by IATA, Montreal, Canada)

Does a Type 1B packaging satisfy ICAO Packing Instruction 650 for air transport?

The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Technical Instructions refer to Packing Instruction (PI) 650 for transport of UN3373, BIOLOGICAL SUBSTANCE, CATEGORY B. A Type 1B packaging built to the CAN/CGSB-43.125 standard does not automatically satisfy all of the requirements specified in ICAO PI 650. If your shipment is subject to the requirements of PI 650 of the ICAO Technical Instructions, you must ensure that the additional requirements of PI 650 are complied with.

The following table outlines the significant differences between the requirements for a Type 1B packaging and a package prepared in accordance with ICAO PI 650. Please consult the ICAO Technical Instructions for details on PI 650.

Requirement Type 1B
CGSB-43.125 + 5.16.1
of the TDG Regulations
Packing Instruction 650
Triple packaging Yes Yes
Primary receptacle (inner) quantity limit None 1 L (liquid)
None for solids
Outer package quantity limit None 4 L (liquid)
4 kg (solids)
Outer packaging specifications Must be resistant Must be rigid;
Must have minimum of size of 100 mm x 100 mm
Specification marking TC-125-1B None
Safety marks Diamond mark with UN3373 inside, Proper shipping name Diamond mark with UN3373 inside, Proper shipping name
Design Tests Drop test (1.2m), pressure capable receptacle to 95 kPa (for liquids only) Drop test (1.2m), pressure capable receptacle to 95 kPa
Competent Authority Registration (i.e. TC Registration) None None
Refrigerated or Frozen Specimen Must be in compliance with the requirements in Section 4.2.2.1 of CGSB-43.125 Specific requirements

What is a Type 1C packaging?

Type 1C packaging is suitable for transporting most biomedical waste, that is, certain Category A and all Category B infectious substances intended for disposal.

Note: There are 19 Category A infectious substances that you MUST NEVER ship in a Type 1C packaging. For more details, please refer to "TABLE 1" of this document or column 4 of the table under Section 5.16 of the TDG Regulations.

What are the basic characteristics of a Type 1C packaging?

A Type 1C packaging may be either a single or a combination packaging. Below is a summary for clause 6 of the CAN/CGSB-43.125 standard. There are 3 options:

1. SINGLE PACKAGING (e.g., Intermediate Bulk Container (IBC) or Drum)

A single Type 1C package may consist of some type of UN standardized packaging tested to Packing Group I or II performance level. A UN standardized packaging could be either an intermediate bulk container (IBC) or a drum (plastic, steel and fibreboard).

2. COMBINATION PACKAGE (e.g., Bag placed inside a box, inside an IBC or inside a drum)

A combination Type 1C package may consist of a:

  • securely closed plastic film bag placed inside either a:
    • Packaging that is rigid, leak-proof and designed for repeated use; or
    • Inside a fibreboard box, drum or IBC manufactured according to the UN Recommendations. It could also be a non-standardized packaging that complies with the criteria listed in CAN/CGSB-43.125.
Note: The bag must pass the Elmendorf tear strength and the Dart impact strength tests as specified in the CAN/CGSB-43.125 standard.

3. SHARPS CONTAINER

A sharps container must:

  • meet the requirements of standard CAN/CSA-Z316.6-95; or
  • be rigid, leak proof and designed for repeated use.

How do I identify a Type 1C container?

There is no certification markings required for a Type 1C container. A Type 1C container will not have a UN marking if it is a non-standardized means of containment. However, if a component of a Type 1C container is a UN standardized means of containment (for example, a UN Drum or UN intermediate Bulk Container) that component will have a UN marking.

The United Nations packaging symbol. This image consists of a circle and inside the circle are the letters u and n, which are in lower case letters.  The letter 'u' is in the upper portion of the circle and the letter 'n' is in the lower portion.
1A1 / Y 200 / S / 16
CAN / ABC 2-001
Note: you must display dangerous goods safety marks on any container you use to transport infectious substances in Class 6.2 as required in Part 4 of the TDG Regulations.

What does a Type 1C packaging look like?

As mentioned above, a Type 1C package can be many different things, such as a box, drum, a bag placed inside a box or a sharps container. Below is an image of a sharps container.

Picture of a red rigid plastic container with clear lid. A label indicating the presence of regulated medical waste with the biohazard symbol is displayed one side of the container.

Where can I buy Type 1A, 1B and 1C packaging?

The Transport Canada website has a list of vendors for Type 1A and 1B packaging.

Transport Canada does not have a list of vendors for Type 1C packaging since the CAN/CGSB-43.125 standard allows for many different types of non-specification packaging. You must ensure that your shipment meets the requirements listed in the standard for Type 1C packaging.

How do I learn more about infectious substance packaging?

To learn more about Type 1A, Type 1B and Type 1C packaging, you can:

Documentation

Do I need a shipping document?

You must prepare a shipping document if you are shipping a Category A infectious substance (UN2814 or UN2900).

However, you will not need a shipping document if you are shipping a Category B infectious substance (UN3373) in accordance with the exemption set out in Section 1.39 of the TDG Regulations. Don’t forget that there are certain Category A infectious substances than can be shipped as a Category B. You need to refer to Subsections 2.36(2) and (3) of the TDG Regulations to verify what Category A infectious substances can be shipped as a Category B

Do I need to list the biological/technical name of the infectious substance on the shipping document?

No.

Where can we get more information on shipping documents?

To learn more, or to view a sample shipping document, consult our TDG Bulletin titled: “TDG Bulletin - Shipping Documents”.

Labels and Placards

Which dangerous goods safety marks must we display on a small means of containment?

That depends on the type of infectious substance you are shipping.

CATEGORY A CATEGORY B

If you are shipping a Category A, you must label the package with an infectious substance label. This label is illustrated in the Appendix to Part 4 of the TDG Regulations.

Class 6.2 infectious substance label, which is a diamond shaped mark.  This label has the biomedical symbol at the top and the number 6 at the bottom. In the center of the label there is bilingual text that reads as follows: Infectious in case of damage or leakage immediately notify local authorities and CANUTEC 613-996-6666 Infectieux en cas de dommage ou de fuite communiquer immédiatement avec les autorités locales et CANUTEC 613-996-6666

The text on the label is:

INFECTIOUS IN CASE OF DAMAGE OR LEAKAGE IMMEDIATELY NOTIFY LOCAL AUTHORITIES AND
INFECTIOUS INFECTIEUX EN CAS DE DOMMAGE OU DE FUITE COMMUNIQUER IMMEDIATEMENT AVEC LES AUTORITÉS ET
CANUTEC
613-996-6666

Extra marking requirements:

The shipping name and UN number:

  • UN2814 – Infectious Substance, Affecting Humans, or
  • UN2900 – Infectious Substance, Affecting Animals

(No technical name (SP16))

When shipping a Category B infectious substance, Section 1.39 and Section 4.22.1 state that you must label the package with the "Category B mark" illustrated in the appendix to Part 4.

The text on the mark is:

UN3373

Text on the package is:

24-Hour Number: 999-999-9999

Extra marking requirements:

The shipping name

  • UN3373 – Biological Substance, Category B

Does the vehicle need placards?

As per Subsection 4.15(1) of the TDG Regulations, placards are required when:

  • The infectious substances are transported in a large means of containment. By definition, a large means of containment is a means of containment with a capacity greater than 450 L (for example, a delivery truck). However, Section 4.16.1 provides a placarding exemption for dangerous goods having a gross mass of 500 kg or less.
    Class 6.2 infectious substance placard, which is a diamond shaped mark. This placard has the biomedical symbol at the top and the number 6 at the bottom. There is no text in the center of the placard.
  • Subsection 7.1(7) of the TDG Regulations lists 16 infectious substances that require an ERAP. For those situations, the placards and UN number must be displayed. The placarding exemption found in Section 4.16.1 cannot be used when an ERAP is required.
    Class 6.2 infectious substance placard, which is a diamond shaped mark. This placard has the biomedical symbol at the top and the number 6 at the bottom. In the center of the placard, the number 2814 is written.

Who is responsible for placarding the vehicle?

The person who loads the vehicle or large means of containment is responsible for displaying the placards. This person could be either the consignor (i.e. shipper) or the carrier. Once the vehicle leaves the site, the carrier is responsible for placarding.

Exemptions

Are there any exemptions?

There are two exemptions for shipping infectious substances or potential infectious substances. Like most exemptions, you can find them in Part 1 of the TDG Regulations.

  • Section 1.39 – Class 6.2, Infectious Substances, UN3373, BIOLOGICAL SUBSTANCE, CATEGORY B exemption.
  • Section 1.42.3 – Medical or Clinical Waste.

In order to use an exemption, you must comply with all conditions listed in the exemption. If you can’t, then you need to ship your infectious substances fully regulated.

Marine Shipments

Is there anything I should know for marine shipments?

When shipping by vessel, you must refer to Part 11 of the TDG Regulations.

Domestic Transport

When transporting infectious substances domestically by vessel, Part 11 of the TDG Regulations requires you to comply with the TDG Regulations only. In this case, you are not required to use the International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code (IMDG Code).

International Transport

When transporting infectious substances internationally by vessel or by vessel on a "home-trade voyage, class 1", Part 11 of the TDG Regulations requires you to comply with the IMDG Code and some additional requirements in the TDG Regulations.

Note: An example of a "home-trade voyage, class 1" is when a vessel departs the port of Halifax and travels through the Panama Canal to its destination in Vancouver.

Air Shipments

Is there anything I should know for air shipments?

When shipping by air, you must refer to Part 12 of the TDG Regulations.

Domestic Transport

When transporting infectious substances domestically by air, Part 12 of the TDG Regulations requires you to comply with the ICAO Technical Instructions and Subsection 12.1(1) of the TDG Regulations.

However, there is an exemption under Section 12.6 of the TDG Regulations that applies to air operators. It relates to the handling and transporting of toxic and infectious substances.

International Transport

When transporting infectious substances internationally by air, Part 12 of the TDG Regulations requires you to comply with the ICAO Technical Instructions and Subsection 12.1(1) of the TDG Regulations.

Quick Reference Guide – Road Transport

Item Category A Category B Waste
Classification UN2814
Infectious Substance, Affecting Humans

UN2900
Infectious Substance, Affecting Animals
UN3373
Biological Substance, Category B
UN2814 or UN2900 if
waste contains Category A

UN3291 if waste contains Category B or if the shipper has reasonable grounds to believe that there is a low probability of containing infectious substances
Packaging
Selection
Type 1A

Type 1B (Only in certain instances. Refer to Section 5.16 and Subsections 2.36(2) and (3) of the TDG Regulations for more details)
Type 1A
Type 1B
Type 1A
Type 1B
Type 1C
Documentation Yes
No, if shipped in accordance with Section 1.39 of the TDG Regulations No, if shipped in accordance with Section 1.39 or Section 1.42.3 of the TDG Regulations
Labels /
marking
Yes, Class 6.2 label
Shipping name and UN number (no technical name)
Yes
Category B mark and 24-hour number
Not required if
shipped in accordance with Section 1.42.3 of the TDG Regulations
Placards Yes, if ERAP is required; see Section 7.1(7)

No, if total gross mass of shipment is 500 kg or less and no ERAP is required
No, if total gross mass of shipment is 500 kg or less No, if total gross mass of shipment is 500 kg or less
Training Yes Yes Not required if
shipped in accordance with Section 1.42.3 of the TDG Regulations

Contact Information

Compliance with the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act and Regulations

Failure to comply with the TDG Act and TDG Regulations may lead to fines and/or imprisonment. For more information, you can visit the TDG website at: www.tc.gc.ca/tdg. If you have any questions about the TDG Regulations, contact a Transport Canada dangerous goods inspector in your region.

Atlantic Region 1-866-814-1477 TDG-TMDAtlantic@tc.gc.ca
Quebec Region (514) 283-5722 TMD-TDG.Quebec@tc.gc.ca
Ontario Region (416) 973-1868 TDG-TMDOntario@tc.gc.ca
Prairie & Northern Region 1-888-463-0521 TDG-TMDPNR@tc.gc.ca
Pacific Region (604) 666-2955 TDGPacific-TMDPacifique@tc.gc.ca

Purchase of Standards and Publications

Appendix

Transporting Ebola Contaminated Waste

Transport Canada regulates the Ebola virus as an infectious substance under the TDG Regulations. Anyone handling, offering for transport or transporting this infectious substance by road, rail, marine or air must comply with the TDG Regulations:

  • Part 3 requires the consignment to be accompanied by a shipping document.
  • Part 4 requires the means of containment to display the appropriate safety marks.
  • Section 5.16 requires the use of a Type 1A package. However, with the recent Ebola outbreak, we have realized that these packages are not large enough for items such as personal protective equipment, gowns, gloves, linen, waste, etc.

    As such, a person may apply for an Equivalency Certificate in order to transport Ebola contaminated waste in a means of containment, other than a type 1A, that provides an equivalent level of safety. The person must provide the required information listed in Section 14.1 of the TDG Regulations and include a detailed description of the packaging he/she proposes to use.

    Send your questions pertaining to an Equivalency Certificate to tdgapprovals@tc.gc.ca or call 1-855-298-1520.

    You may apply:
By mail:
David Lamarche
Chief, Permits and Approvals Division
Transportation of dangerous goods Directorate
Transport Canada
330 Sparks Street, 9th Floor
Ottawa ON K1A 0N5
By fax:
(613) 993-5925
By e-mail:
  • Part 6 requires anyone who handles, offers for transport or transports the infectious substances to be properly trained and hold a training certificate.
  • Part 7 requires anyone who offers for transport or imports any quantity of the Class 6.2 infectious substances listed in Subsection 7.1(7) to have an approved Emergency Response Assistance Plan (ERAP). The Ebola virus is listed in Paragraph 7.1(7)(b).
    • It is the person who offers for transport or imports Ebola contaminated waste who must apply for an ERAP.
    • Transport Canada will issue a reference number in writing when it approves the ERAP.
    • The ERAP reference number and activation telephone number must appear on the shipping document.
    • A person may request written permission to use another person’s approved ERAP if it applies to the dangerous goods, the mode of transport, the means of containment and the geographical area. The person who holds the approved ERAP must also agree to respond to an emergency on behalf of the other person.
    • To learn more about ERAPs, visit: Emergency Response Assistance Plans (ERAPs).
Note: The transport of deceased bodies contaminated with the Ebola virus is not regulated under the TDG Regulations.
Date modified: