Railroad tank cars transporting TIH (toxic inhalation hazard) substances in Canada will be required to have heads and shells constructed of normalized steel under updated Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations established by Transport Canada. The new rules, which take effect July 2, 2021, are consistent with updated U.S. regulations. Normalized steel undergoes heat treatment that increases its durability and resistance to cracking at low temperatures.
The interim TIH tank standard (HM-246 in the U.S., which authorized the use of interim tank specifications for new construction of TIH cars DOT-105J500I, DOT-112J500I or DOT-105J600I, depending on commodity, and 9-mph rollover protection, limited to a 20-year regulatory life) will become Canada’s permanent standard. Car service life will be extended to 50 years, also consistent with the U.S.
The thickness of any new pressure tank car constructed using carbon steel of 483 to 558 mpa (70,000 to 81,000 psi) minimum tensile strength will be increased from 16 mm (5/8 inch) to 16.7 mm (21/32 inch). The thermal protection systems for new Class 117 (DOT-117J) tank cars must include, at minimum, a 12.7 mm (1/2 inch)-thick ceramic fiber blanket. Tank cars meeting all these requirements but authorized for transport under an equivalency certificate must have their equivalency certificate stencil marking removed at the next tank qualification.
Transport Canada said that phasing out tank cars constructed of non-normalized steel “will provide greater protection to Canadians and the environment by reducing the risks of transporting toxic substances by rail. Rail shippers also now have consistent rules on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border.”
The amendments to the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations also effect Emergency Response Assistance Plan regulations, specifically, to clarify the process for when such plans are to be implemented, and by whom. An Emergency Response Assistance Plan is required for transporting certain higher-risk dangerous goods. It describes the actions to be taken in the event of an accident and is intended to help emergency responders by providing them with specialized expertise, equipment or response teams when needed, according to Transport Canada.