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Rail News: Federal Legislation & Regulation

Transport Canada calls on railroads to revise work/rest rules

Transport Minister Marc Garneau
Photo – Transport Canada


Canada's Transport Minister Marc Garneau has ordered the nation's railroads to revise their work/rest rules for operating employees to ensure they reflect the latest science and fatigue management practices.

Railroads must submit their revised rules by May 19, 2019, according to a Transport Canada press release.

Developed by the railroads in consultation with unions or other relevant associations, the rules are approved by the transport minister.

"The science on fatigue has evolved considerably since the 'Work/Rest Rules for Railway Operating Employees' were first put into place in 2002. We now have a better understanding of the extent to which fatigue can affect human performance and ultimately compromise railway safety," said Garneau. "We need to make changes now."

Railroads' revised rules should address the length of a duty period; split shifts; minimum rest period; cumulative time on duty; minimum free time from work; advance notice of work schedules; and fatigue management plans.

Garneau is authorized to establish rules for the railroads to follow if he's not satisfied with their revisions, Transport Canada officials said.