The Dangerous Goods Regulations were first introduced in Canada in 1985 to support the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act (TDG Act) of 1980. The TDG Act was revised in 1992 and has been in effect until now. The Regulations have been completely rewritten in a version referred to as the Clear Language Version. The revised Regulations come into effect on August 15, 2002. The intent of this latest rewrite is to make the Regulations easier to read, understand and follow by everyone involved in the process of handling or transporting Dangerous Goods. While the Regulations have been rewritten and do differ from the old Regulations, those differences are such that they should allow for better understanding and compliance, and should minimize the risks associated with the transportation of Dangerous Goods. The new Regulations and Standards must be consulted for the handling, offering for transport, transportation or importation of Dangerous Goods and the construction, re-qualification, selection and use of Means of Containment.

The following are just some of the changes that you will find in the Clear Language Regulations:

- Shippers, not Manufacturers, are responsible for classifying, documenting, packaging and labelling Dangerous Goods.

- Carriers are responsible to verify that the information is present and, if not, then to have it corrected before picking up the Dangerous Goods shipment.

- Packages will no longer be called that - they will be referred to as "small or large Means of Containment".

- "Large Means of Containment" (over 450 litre capacity) can be large totes, but can also mean transport containers (ocean type) or highway trailers.

- Shipping document requirements have also been changed. It must be prepared by the shipper and must include:

- The name and address of the shipper¹s place of business in Canada
- The date the document was prepared
- The description of the dangerous goods in the following order:

  • The SHIPPING NAME from Schedule 1 and, if subject to Special Provision 16, the technical name. It can be in upper or lower case letters, but must be in upper case only when the name contains other descriptive text.


  • The SUBSIDIARY CLASS(ES), if applicable



  • The TOTAL GROSS WEIGHT OR VOLUME of each Dangerous Good, expressed in metric; except for explosives, which are expressed as NET EXPLOSIVE QUANTITY

  • The NUMBER of labelled "small Means of Containment"

  • The words "24 HOUR NUMBER", followed by a complete telephone number where technical information can be obtained

  • The ERAP NUMBER issued by Transport Canada, and the telephone number to activate is required (this number can be the same as the "24 HOUR NUMBER", but must be so indicated)

There is no prescribed format for the shipping document. Both Dangerous and Non Dangerous Goods can be shipped together, but the Dangerous Goods must be listed first, or highlighted in a contrasting colour, or entered with an "X" in front of the Dangerous Good.

These are just a few of the many changes that have been made to the TDG Act. We encourage you to reference the complete TDG Clear Language Regulations, in order to fully understand the impact that they might have on your operation. The full text of the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act and the Clear Language Regulations can be accessed through the Transport Canada website at Enter the Transport Canada website and click on the TDG-TMD icon! Our goal is to ensure safe transport of the merchandise you have entrusted to us.