Before workers can safely transport dangerous goods, they need to have Transportation of Dangerous Goods (TDG) training to keep themselves and everyone around them safe. When someone has valid TDG Certification, it means that they understand the safety requirements involved in moving volatile goods from one location to another without harming those around them or the surrounding environment. To further understand what dangerous goods are and why certification is important, we need to start with answering basic questions.
What is the TGD?
The Transportation of Dangerous Goods (TDG) Act and Regulations sets out standards for worker and public safety when volatile goods are transported by road, air, rail, or water (marine). Each province and territory have their own transportation of dangerous goods legislation, but it generally mirrors the Canadian government’s federal regulations.
The main differences between federal and provincial or territorial TDG Regulations are typically found in the transportation of dangerous goods on highways, as defined in each individual jurisdiction’s version of a Motor Vehicle Act. For instance, Alberta’s transportation of dangerous goods regulations requires that drivers get a provincial permit before they can transport dangerous goods throughout the province. British Columbia’s regulations are similar, but have a specific section for the transport of these goods on BC ferries, since there are many places in the province that are only accessible by ferries moving vehicles across bodies of water from one roadway to another.
What is considered dangerous goods?
Dangerous goods are any item that falls under Schedule 1 (lists items based on United Nations (UN) number), or Schedule 3 (the alphabetical index) of the federal TDG Regulations. A general summary of classifications of substances can be found in Part 2 of the regulations.
Basically, any item that has the potential to cause an unreasonable risk to public safety, health, and/or property when transported is considered a dangerous good. These items can be common household items like oven cleaner, vanilla extracts, and lithium batteries. In fact, because of the increasing demand for electronics, lithium batteries have received special attention from regulators in terms of making sure companies are compliant with the TDG Act and Regulations in all jurisdictions where they are transported.
Who needs TDG certification?
TDG Certification is needed by anyone who handles goods that meet the definition for dangerous goods in the TDG Act and Regulations, including those who load and unload these goods before and after shipment. The only small exception is that according to part 6 of the TDG Regulations, you are under direct supervision of a person who holds a TDG certificate, you may not need one of your own if your supervisor is physically present while you are doing the job and has trained you adequately themselves. However, most employers will require you to get certified for everyone’s safety. Here are some examples of professions where you could potentially need a TDG certificate:
- Warehouse manager or supervisor
- Truck driver or Fleet dispatcher
- Operations supervisor
- Logistics coordinator or supervisor
- Clinical research coordinator (CRC)
What kind of TDG Certification do I need?
Your employer must provide you with the TDG training you need to do your job effectively and safely. DANATEC by We Know Training offers standard TDG online training that meets all of Transport Canada’s training requirements listed in the TDG Act and Regulations.
For truck drivers, the Canadian Fuels Association implemented a Driver Certification Program for the safe transport of fuels (such as gas and diesel) to ensure that fuels are transported and handled properly as they are moved from terminals to customers and retail sites, like private homes and gas stations. Drivers need this training not only for safety, but also to gain access to the terminal sites where fuel products are loaded for transport. DANATEC by We Know Training offers a trusted Driver Certification Program to train new drivers in the Atlantic, Ontario, Quebec, and Western Canada areas.
If you are someone who will be responsible for training workers on TDG, DANATEC by We Know Training offers a 3-day online Train the Trainer course that gives you the in-depth information you need to be an effective transportation of dangerous goods safety teacher.
TCG Train the Trainer Course
Check out the latest dates for our Train the Trainer course
Hosted online, private video session
September 28, 29, 30 2020 – 8am - 4pm MST
November 18,19, 20 2020 – 8am - 4pm MST
December 7, 8, 9 2020 – 8am - 4pm
How long is a TDG training certificate valid?
A TDG certificate is valid for 3 years from the training and exam completion date. Regulations can change over time, so it’s important to revisit the TDG training every few years to make sure you are aware of any new regulations or changes to existing ones.
Do you need a new TDG certificate when changing employers?
When you start a new job, your new employer might ask you to redo your TDG training or they may choose to forgo it if your TDG certificate is still valid. Whether or not you have to partake in TDG training at your new job is entirely up to the discretion of your new employer.
The importance of TDG certification
There are a lot of essential goods that are considered volatile to transport safely. The effective and safe transportation of dangerous goods depends on excellent training. The Canadian Government’s Transportation of Dangerous Good Act and Regulations gives provinces and territories standards to follow so that effective training programs can be developed. Whether you are a driver, a warehouse worker, or a supervisor, if you work around dangerous goods then TDG training and certification is required and paramount to a safe working environment.