Transportation related advocacy articles

Coming Soon – TRANSCAER® developing VR experience for first responders

Development is well underway on a new virtual reality (VR) experience of the CCPX 911 safety training tank car.  This VR experience is designed to provide first responders familiarization and awareness with railway equipment, emergency response and safety procedures, and the transportation of dangerous goods.

Developed in partnership with CIAC members and partners, the Railway Association of Canada and Transport Canada under the Rail Safety Improvement Program (RSIP) the VR experience will deliver more interactive training at conferences and outreach events where the presence of an actual tank car would be difficult or impractical. The tour will also be made available online for all users to access on demand.  This is the first component of the exciting projects we have planned through this RSIP partnership.  So, stay tuned and look for the virtual reality training at our next TRANSCAER event or online soon!

COVID-19 Transportation Advocacy

Getting the chemistry industry’s products to market is crucial during the COVID-19 pandemic and CIAC’s team is working diligently with members and partners to communicate and advocate all levels of government to ensure transportation—transportation of chemical products specifically—is not impeded.

Questions from members continue to be communicated and addressed, such as clarifying what essential services designations include and documentation expectations for truck drivers.

Another on-going issue shared by our partners is the treatment of truck drivers and access to amenities available on many routes.

For any transportation-related questions, feel free to contact Kara Edwards, CIAC’s Director of Transportation:

Nominations for TRANSCAER® awards open until Feb. 28

Do you know an exceptional individual whose contributions to TRANSCAER® Canada have been instrumental to the program’s success? We want to hear from you!

Awards are available in three categories: Distinguished Service, National Achievement and Regional Achievement.

Led by CIAC and the Railway Association of Canada, TRANSCAER® members work with municipalities, emergency responders, and residents in communities along transportation routes to make sure they are informed about the products being moved through their area and prepared to respond to potential incidents involving dangerous goods.

Nominations close February 28. Please fill out your nomination here.

TRANSCAER® members and partners ensure the Safety Train makes it home

On January 22, Joe Caponio of ERCO Worldwide put a call out to the Ontario Regional TRANSCAER® Committee for help in getting the beloved Safety Train, the CCPX 911, to its new home at the Fire and Emergency Services Training Institute (FESTI) at Pearson International Airport in Mississauga, Ontario.

While the CCPX 911 can no longer tour across the country each year as a premier training tool at TRANSCAER outreach events, the car’s one-of-a-kind design will continue to be leveraged to instruct first responders at FESTI on how to prepare for and respond to transportation incidents involving dangerous goods.

Due to an irreparable crack on the body of the car, it was retired in early 2018 and is no longer able to travel on the rails. After many months of problem-solving, planning and organizing, Mr. Caponio and FESTI Fire Chief and Instructor David Clarke worked together to come up with an alternate transportation solution to move the CCPX 911 from Windsor to Mississauga. The CCPX 911 will make the journey secured to a semi-trailer truck and transported to FESTI by road.

Only four days after of Mr. Caponio’s announcement, several CIAC members and TRANSCAER partners pitched in more than enough funds to relocate the Safety Train. Phil Bott, Division Chief at FESTI, was grateful for CIAC’s members’ immediate action and their willingness to support the Safety Train’s new life, stating: “Your work is greatly appreciated and will not be forgotten.”

This is another great example of Responsible Care® in action. A big thank you to all those that helped make it happen!

  • National Silicates
  • Blachford
  • GFL
  • Seaboard Transport
  • ERCO Worldwide
  • BASF
  • Harold Marcus Ltd
  • ERAC
  • CIAC

Regulation in serious need of modernization, CIAC tells INDU

Canada’s regulatory system often results in inefficiency, delays, administrative burdens and unnecessary costs to both government and business, CIAC President and CEO, Bob Masterson, told the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology (INDU) February 7.

The comments were provided as part of a study on regulatory modernization in response to the Federal Fall Economic Statement in November.

Mr. Masterson targeted regulatory overlap and duplication, rushed regulation that does not take industry’s perspectives for achieving goals, uncertainty and timeliness in his speech to the Committee.

“Obtaining an approval in Canada takes an average of 249 days, about double the OECD average and triple the time required in the United States. Make no mistake, this reality is well-known globally and is a strong influencer on Canada’s foreign direct investment gap,” he said. “The study being undertaken by this committee is welcome and urgently overdue.”

He pointed to the implementation of the Chemicals Management Plan and Transport Canada’s multi-faceted approach to better managing risks associated with the transportation of dangerous goods as great examples of regulatory initiatives working well in Canada. He also noted that the Ontario government had started important efforts in this area with its comprehensive Red Tape Challenge recommendations beginning to be implemented by the current government.

CIAC members meet with three key federal ministers to discuss rail transport issues

On December 6 in Ottawa, several CIAC members, CIAC Director of Transportation, Kara Edwards, and three federal ministers met through Transport Canada’s Commodity Supply Chain Table to discuss the chemistry sector’s experience and views related to the national transportation network.

In attendance were Minister of Transport, Marc Garneau, Minister of Natural Resources, Amarjeet Sohi and Minister of Agriculture, Lawrence MacAulay.

Representatives stressed to the ministers the importance of maintaining a commodity-neutral perspective while working to find solutions to rail service issues. They also pointed out that with an increase in investment in the sector expected thanks to the positive support in the federal government’s fall economic statement, additional rail network capacity will be needed to move these new goods to market. Other areas of importance included continued support for the National Trade Corridor Fund and support for the new data becoming available from the Transportation Modernization Act. The first weekly reporting of metrics through the Act began on December 10 and can be accesses here.

Additionally, recent CIAC survey results were shared at the forum, highlighting how members in Western Canada are currently experiencing very challenging shipping conditions. Our industry noted the need to work collaboratively with all stakeholders throughout the commodity supply chain to best use resources to get products to market in a safe, reliable, and efficient manner.

The CIAC Rail Committee will continue to be the main venue to engage key stakeholders in this area and CIAC will be working with Transport Canada to better track our industry’s performance within the Canadian system going forward. For more information please reach out to Kara Edwards.

Information sharing and collaboration at Alberta Chemistry Day 2018

Senate Committee includes two key amendments as Bill C-49 passes third reading

CIAC was pleased to see its two key proposed amendments included when the Senate Committee on Transport and Communications met to go through Bill C-49, the Transportation Modernization Act, on March 27.

The two amendments proposed by CIAC involved allowing the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) the ability to investigate on its own initiative and providing costing determination by the CTA in final offer arbitration.

As part of a group of key shippers promoting these two amendments, CIAC had the opportunity to discuss the proposed amendments with Transport Minister Marc Garneau and Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr.

Bill C-49 has passed third reading in the Senate and will now go back to the House of Commons. CIAC does not expect the government to accept all the amendments made by the Senate, but we are working diligently to get our amendments through.

We will continue to work with Minister Garneau’s office and our rail shipper coalition partners to ensure the final bill is capable of addressing shippers’ long-standing concerns in these and other areas.

Bill C-49 will next return to the House of Commons, which is set to return on April 16.

When promulgated into force, CIAC will turn attention to working with Transport Canada to develop the necessary supporting regulations, and with Transport Canada and the CTA to ensure smooth introduction of the Act and related regulations.

More on the Standing Senate Committee on Transport and Communications amendments to Bill C-49.

Watch the proceedings of the Committee.

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