Transport Canada held a 60-day online consultation on a paper that discussed our proposal to modernize the Railway Employee Qualification Standards Regulations, 1987. The consultation was held from November 15, 2021, to January 17, 2022.
We also spoke with stakeholders through one-on-one engagement sessions. These sessions focused on 2 questions:
- What are your views, positive or negative, on our proposed approach to training requirements and guidance?
- Are there key issues impacting training and qualifications of railway employees that you would like to propose for consideration that were not included in this paper?
Summary of stakeholder comments
- Stakeholders realize that the Railway Employee Qualification Standards Regulations must be modernized because they are outdated. They felt that the updated regulations should consider the way the rail industry operates and uses technology, like simulators.
- Transport Canada should consider expanding the regulations so that they apply to key safety-related positions, like mechanics, engineers, and track employees.
- There should be different requirements for freight rail and passenger rail.
- Stakeholders are concerned about the requirement that newly qualified railway employees be supervised by an experienced employee for 2 years.
- There are concerns that most small railways won’t have access to simulators for training.
- Transport Canada should consider including a transition period before the updated regulations come into force.
We reviewed the feedback we received through this consultation, and will consider it as we update the regulations.
The next round of consultations will occur once the updated regulations are pre-published in the Canada Gazette Part I. Transport Canada will notify stakeholders when this proposal appears in the Canada Gazette.