Who We Are

On any given day, Transport Canada may be called upon to respond to many kinds of emergency situations.

Mandate & Mission

The Emergency Preparedness branch has an important role. We:

  • Work with other departments, agencies and the transportation industry to maintain the best possible transportation system for Canada and Canadians in all incidents, emergencies and crises.
  • Plan, train and exercise for, and respond to, all emergencies that affect and/or require the support of any part of the national transportation system.


We have the following main areas of responsibility: planning, exercise, training and response.

  • Planning

    The Planning Group develops and coordinates departmental, national and international emergency/contingency plans related to transportation. To ensure appropriate planning requirements are reflected in the national and international plans and that all support functions are accurate, staff works closely with:

    • TC modal (Rail, Marine, Civil Aviation, etc.) and functional experts;
    • Other government departments;
    • The private sector;
    • Our United States (U.S.) counterparts; and
    • NATO.
  • Exercises

    The Branch coordinates, on behalf of the Minister of Transport, the development and delivery of Transport Canada's EP Exercises - a very important part of Transport Canada's Emergency Preparedness program. These exercises test our emergency and business continuity plans, our facilities and equipment, as well as train departmental employees. All relevant agencies and stakeholders participate as required in exercises, which can be departmental, regional, national or international in scope.

  • Training

    As part of our mandate and Emergency Preparedness strategy, a national Emergency Preparedness Course is being provided to all Transport Canada employees involved in Departmental response to emergency. This course is supported by a simulation exercise.

  • Response

    Transport Canada must be ready to respond to any situation that disrupts the national or regional transportation system or Transport Canada employees.

    The Situation Centres ( TCSC s) are the focal points for TC response. They do not manage the site of a disaster, analyze the cause of the problem or attempt to prevent problems from occurring.

    They do provide related information to:

    • Senior management;
    • Other departments and agencies;
    • Other countries: and
    • NATO.

    The National Situation Centre is located in Ottawa, and operates on a 24/7 basis. Regional centres are located in Moncton, Montreal, Toronto, Winnipeg and Vancouver.

    TCSC staff deals with situations affecting Canada's transportation infrastructure - including marine, air and surface modes. The centres are usually operated by Emergency Preparedness staff. During emergency situations, however, trained TC experts will move into the centres to assist in the department's response. National and international problems are handled in Ottawa while regional problems are handled in the regional centres.

Partnerships & Committees

We work with many organizations involved in emergency preparedness. This makes our contributions more relevant to the larger emergency preparedness picture.

International Partnerships: NATO & Canada/US

We also participate in international emergency preparedness. By sharing supplies, information and manpower with partner countries, we:

  • Help ensure smooth cooperation during international emergencies;and
  • Can expect help during our own emergencies.

Learn more about Canada and the United States emergency preparedness.