Transportation Safety Board of Canada Regulations

Understanding the new TSB Regulations and how they affect your work in the rail industry

What's new in the new regulations? The Transportation Safety Board Regulations were changed for the first time since 1992, bringing them up-to-date with the current transportation industry and legislation. As of 12 March 2014, Part 2 of the Regulations came into effect. Part 1 comes into effect on 1 July, 2014. This fact sheet highlights some important changes that may affect your work in the rail industry.

The new regulations make it easier for you to understand what needs to be reported

What has changed?

The TSB has put in place new regulations that repeal and replace the previous version. The new regulations are simpler and better aligned with other federal legislation, industry standards and international agreements. This has changed some of what you must report to the TSB in the event of a transportation occurrence and how we investigate. In particular, the new regulations:

Who do the regulations apply to?

The new regulations apply to all rail occurrences in Canada if the railway is within the legislative authority of Parliament, including local railway companiesFootnote 1 that fall directly under the authority of the Railway Safety Act when operating on federally-regulated railway lines. They also apply to any occurrence outside Canada if the TSB is investigating.

Compliance with the new regulations is mandatory. Companies that don't comply can be held accountable under the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act.

Effective 12 March 2014 – TSB Regulations, Part 2

Witness interviews

TSB investigators interview witnesses for the sole purpose of advancing transportation safety. The interviews are confidential and protected under our Act. To help ensure witnesses feel comfortable and speak openly, the new regulations specify that:

Effective 1 July 2014 –TSB Regulations, Part 1


Definitions have been brought up-to-date with terminology used in other federal acts and regulations, industry standards, and international agreements. Here are some definitions that may affect what you report to the TSB:

Definitions that may affect what you report to the TSB
Term Definition Change
Dangerous goods “Dangerous goods” has the same meaning as in section 2 of the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act. Aligned with other legislation
Derailment Any time one or more wheels of rolling stock come off the normal running surface of the rail. Clarified
Main track “Main track” has the same meaning as in the Canadian Rail Operating Rules. New
Serious injury Any bone fracture (except fingers, toes or the nose); lacerations that cause severe hemorrhage or nerve, muscle or tendon damage; internal organ injury; second or third degree burns or any burns affecting more than 5% of the body; exposure to infectious substances or harmful radiation; or an injury likely to require hospitalization. Added various injuries in addition to those that likely require hospitalization
Subdivision track “Subdivision track” has the same meaning as in the Canadian Rail Operating Rules. New

Reporting requirements

When are you required to report an occurrence to the TSB?

In addition to the previous requirements, you must now report an occurrence when:

What are you required to report?

In addition to the previous requirements, your reports to the TSB must now include:

If dangerous goods are released, your reports must also include:

For more information

For more information about reporting a rail occurrence, please visit our report an occurrence webpage. You can also consult the following documents:

If you have specific questions about the new regulations, please contact


Footnote 1

A “local railway company” is a provincially-regulated railway company or light-rail commuter service which operates on a federally-regulated railway.

Return to footnote 1 referrer