Vol. 148, No. 6 — February 8, 2014

Grade Crossings Regulations

Statutory authority

Railway Safety Act

Sponsoring department

Department of Transport

REGULATORY IMPACT ANALYSIS STATEMENT

(This statement is not part of the Regulations.)

Executive summary

Issues: Since August 2010, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) has indicated on its Watchlist of safety issues that the “risk of passenger trains colliding with vehicles remains too high in busy rail corridors.” Although grade crossing accidents have generally fallen over the past 25 years, there has been a marked increase in fatalities at grade crossings since 2009.

Although there is a long history of grade crossing safety legislation and regulation, there are significant gaps with respect to how railway companies and road authorities manage safety risks at federally regulated grade crossings.

Multiple reviews of the Railway Safety Act (RSA) acknowledged that the multi-jurisdictional nature of grade crossings is at the root of their safety deficiencies. RSA reviews also identified blocked grade crossings as a serious safety concern.

Currently, the RSA, voluntary standards and existing regulations do not adequately address grade crossing safety management issues. Inadequate implementation of voluntary standards and a lack of information sharing between road authorities and railway companies have put the safety of Canadians at risk.

Description: The primary objective of the regulatory proposal is to increase safety at Canada’s federally regulated grade crossings and to reduce the incidence of deaths, injuries, property damage and environmental damage. To achieve this, the proposed Grade Crossings Regulations are intended to ensure that a reasonably safe environment exists for persons travelling on road and rail by

  • establishing enforceable safety standards for grade crossings;
  • clarifying the roles and responsibilities of railway companies, road authorities and private authorities; and
  • promoting collaboration between railway companies and road authorities.

Cost-benefit statement: Over the next 20 years, the proposed Grade Crossings Regulations are estimated to

  • generate $261 million in net present value (NPV) benefit to Canada;
  • result in fewer collisions (956), fatalities (109) and serious injuries (149); and
  • prevent 35 derailments, 845 instances of damage to railway equipment, and 4 968 cases of damage to road vehicles.

A sensitivity analysis was conducted to test the robustness of the cost-benefit analysis results based on variations in some key parameters. Twenty-seven scenarios were tested in the sensitivity analysis, based on various combinations of collision reduction, discount rate and implementation cost. Overall, the sensitivity analysis demonstrated that the proposed Grade Crossings Regulations are likely to result in a significant positive net present value.

“One-for-One” Rule and small business lens: The normal application of the “One-for-One” Rule would not apply because the proposed Regulations are critical to protecting the public safety of Canadians. Therefore, the proposal would be carved out from the application of the Rule.

The Railway Association of Canada identified that five of their members are small businesses, which represents approximately 0.214% of the total number of crossings. Therefore, the impact of the proposed Regulations is assumed to be very minimal.

However, since the proposed Regulations are safety-based under the authority of the RSA, it would not be appropriate to differentiate between small and large businesses when it comes to safety. In any other alternative scenario, railway companies and road authorities would be less able to mitigate risks to Canadian safety.

Background

The Government of Canada has jurisdiction over approximately 14 000 public and 9 000 private grade crossings along 42 650 km of federally regulated rail lines in Canada. The proposed Grade Crossings Regulations would improve safety at these federally regulated grade crossings.

The current federal acts and regulations governing grade crossings are the

Other federal guidelines and voluntary standards to uphold safety at federally regulated grade crossings include

A serious public safety concern of the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) is the risk of accidents at Canada’s railway grade crossings. Since August 2010, the TSB has indicated on its Watchlist of safety issues that the “risk of passenger trains colliding with vehicles remains too high in busy rail corridors.” It has recommended that the Government of Canada develop a comprehensive solution for mitigating the risk at grade crossings that includes new grade crossing safety regulations.

Between 2006 and 2010, collisions involving railway equipment at both public and private crossings resulted in an average of 27 serious injuries and 25 fatalities annually. On average, there was one fatality for every 9 collisions at grade crossings, (see footnote 1) and one serious injury (see footnote 2) for every 7 collisions. In addition, trains are derailed in one out of every 40 crossing collisions, often resulting in significant property damage and transportation system delays. Although the risk of a grade crossing collision has fallen over the past 25 years, the number of fatalities at grade crossings has increased since 2009.

Thousands of road authorities and railway companies are responsible for the safety of railway grade crossings, creating a complex, multi-jurisdictional challenge to maintaining grade crossing safety. Public grade crossings involve approximately 1 550 different municipal, provincial, territorial and federal authorities as well as aboriginal bands. Private crossings involve thousands of private authorities with many different types of roads, including residential, agricultural, industrial, commercial and recreational paths and trails.

The knowledge and collaboration of each party — the road authority and the railway company — are needed to establish adequate safety at a grade crossing. Road authorities and railway companies should collaborate in sharing safety information, such as layouts of the tracks and roadway, traffic volume, speed of trains, volume of trains, existing warning systems, and available sightlines, so that each party may be able to meet the required safety standards.

A number of possible changes can affect safety at a grade crossing including

However, the roles and responsibilities of railway companies and road authorities for monitoring conditions at existing grade crossings can be unclear. Railway companies and road authorities have difficulty applying the current requirements, guidelines and manuals of recommended practice, because these documents lack clarity on their individual responsibilities.

Multiple RSA reviews acknowledged that the multi-jurisdictional nature of grade crossings is at the root of their safety deficiencies. RSA reviews also identified blocked grade crossings as a serious safety concern.

In addition to the above, the broad requirements and definitions under the RSA do not ensure consistency in the design and maintenance of grade crossings or consistency with other governing authorities as it pertains to

Issues

Although there is a long history of grade crossing safety legislation and regulation, significant gaps remain. Existing guidelines and rules have a limited scope regarding the safety measures, operations and best engineering practices required in specific circumstances at grade crossings. Over 10 years ago, Transport Canada and stakeholders drafted standards (RTD-10), which are best engineering practices for the oversight of safety at grade crossings. However, road authorities and railway companies adhere to these standards on a voluntary basis. In summer 2011, Transport Canada conducted a sampling exercise to measure compliance with the RTD-10. Transport Canada railway safety inspectors found that compliance rates at public crossings across all five regions were only 30% to 50%.

Currently the RSA, voluntary standards and existing regulations do not adequately address grade crossing safety management issues. This makes it challenging for road authorities, private authorities and railway companies to apply them, and difficult for railway safety authorities to enforce them. The current regulatory gaps put the safety of Canadians at risk.

Objectives

The primary objective of the regulatory proposal is to increase safety at Canada’s federally regulated grade crossings and to reduce death, injury, property damage and environmental impacts. To achieve this, the proposed Grade Crossings Regulations would ensure that railway companies, road authorities and private authorities oversee and manage the safety of their crossings in accordance with sound engineering principles, and in a manner similar to other road and railway infrastructure. Implementation of the proposed Regulations is expected to

Description

Under the authority of the RSA, the proposed Grade Crossings Regulations would reduce the frequency and severity of accidents at federally regulated grade crossings. This would save lives and prevent injuries and derailments, and would further Transport Canada’s mission to serve the public interest through promotion of a safe and secure transportation system in Canada. In particular, the proposed Regulations would improve safety by

The proposed Regulations would also encompass the Railway-Highway Crossing at Grade Regulations and the Highway Crossings Protective Devices Regulations, thereby eliminating the remaining gaps identified in numerous RSA reviews.

The following are the key aspects of the proposed Grade Crossings Regulations.

  1. Grade Crossings Standards — The Grade Crossings Standards (GCS) are incorporated by reference in the proposed Regulations. The GCS would impose clear standards that meet the safety goals of the RSA and are enforceable, thus improving consistency and safety at grade crossings. Railway companies and road authorities would be required to comply with full safety standards under the GCS, when constructing a new grade crossing. When there is a change at a grade crossing, railway companies and road authorities would be required to comply with safety standards specified by the GCS pertaining to that change. Required standards for existing public and private grade crossings, which include crossing surface, signs and warning systems, are specified in the proposed Regulations and the GCS. A period of five years would be provided after the proposed Regulations come into force to allow for these required standards to be phased in for existing grade crossings.
  2. Roles and responsibilities — The proposed Regulations would provide detailed clarification of the roles and responsibilities of railway companies, road authorities and private authorities, including the responsibilities for each party (as applicable) regarding
    • the sharing of information;
    • the design, construction, and maintenance of crossing surface;
    • the sightlines along the railway right-of-way, over land adjoining a line of railway or other land in the vicinity of a grade crossing, and from the road approaches over private property up to the railway right-of-way limits;
    • the design, construction and maintenance of Railway Crossing signs, Stop signs, Emergency Notification signs, Number of Tracks signs and traffic control devices; and
    • the installation, inspection, testing and maintenance of grade crossing warning systems.
  3. Sharing of safety information — Railway companies and road authorities would be required to share information with each other for public grade crossings within five years of the coming into force of the proposed Regulations. The proposed Regulations specify the critical information that must be shared between both authorities to ensure safety at their grade crossing, e.g. information on the interconnection between traffic signals and warning systems. In addition, railway companies and road authorities would be required to share crossing information when a new grade crossing is constructed or when there is an alteration or operational change at an existing crossing. Railway companies would be required to keep the most recent information shared. Finally, the sharing of information would foster a collaborative environment between railway companies and road authorities responsible for safety at the grade crossing.
  4. Sightlines — Under the proposed Regulations, road authorities, private authorities and railway companies would be required to maintain sightlines at the grade crossing. The proposed Regulations set out standards for sightlines and their maintenance. Sightlines would be preserved by prohibiting the construction of buildings or structures, or the placement of objects, that obstruct the sightlines. Persons who grow trees and brush would also be required to remove them if they obstruct sightlines. In addition, railway companies would be required not to allow any unattended railway equipment to obstruct sightlines.
  5. Maintenance, inspection, and testing — The proposed Regulations establish that a design plan with respect to the warning system must be kept at the grade crossing. Furthermore, a warning system or traffic control device must be maintained, inspected and tested in accordance with the GCS. Railway companies would also be required to keep records of inspections, testing, and maintenance, and a record of a warning system malfunction or failure for a minimum of two years.
  6. Prohibition of obstruction of public crossings — Under the proposed Regulations, where a city, town, municipality or other organized district passes a resolution that the obstruction of a particular type of public crossing creates a safety concern, the railway company and road authority would be required to collaborate to resolve the safety concern.
    In addition, employees of a railway company would be required to use all necessary measures to clear a crossing immediately when an emergency vehicle requires passage. Road authorities would be required to ensure that vehicles do not stop on the crossing surface, such as queuing.
  7. Temporary protection measures — The proposed Regulations establish safety requirements for periods when the road authority or railway company is undertaking an activity at a railway line or road crossing surface that constitutes a risk to the safety of railway operations.
  8. Train whistling — The proposed Regulations would prescribe the requirements applicable to the type of area where the cessation of train whistling could be prohibited and would be based on the safety attributes of the grade crossing.

The proposed Regulations would also repeal the Railway-Highway Crossing at Grade Regulations and the Highway Crossings Protective Devices Regulations. The proposed Regulations and the GCS would encompass the requirements of these regulations.

Regulatory and non-regulatory options considered

Transport Canada evaluated a number of regulatory and non-regulatory options to improve safety at federally regulated grade crossings leading up to the present regulatory proposal.

1. Status quo

The status quo was rejected because the current legislative environment does not provide sufficient safety for Canadians at federally regulated grade crossings. Based on an assessment of the risks, fatalities, injuries, and property damage would continue to remain serious safety issues for Canadians. The lack of clearly defined roles, responsibilities and safety standards leads to confusion, inconsistency, and ultimately results in unsafe grade crossings.

Section 11 of the RSA requires the application of sound engineering principles to crossing design, construction, alteration and evaluation of grade crossings but does not address the responsibilities and accountabilities for railway companies and road authorities for the safety oversight of existing crossings. The current Railway Safety Management System Regulations, which require risk identification and management, only apply to railway companies.

The existing Railway-Highway Crossing at Grade Regulations do not apply to private road crossings, and stipulate insufficient requirements for public crossings. The Highway Crossings Protective Devices Regulations prescribe technical standards for grade crossing warning systems where installed, but do not prescribe where such systems should be installed. The current voluntary standards, RTD-10, are not part of any regulatory requirement, therefore implementation has been insufficient.

The present approach to safety management of existing grade crossings is reactive and relies heavily on railway safety inspectors identifying deficiencies and safety issues for each crossing and recommending the appropriate safety measures. It is impossible for railway safety inspectors to develop and maintain an ongoing awareness of changing conditions at approximately 23 000 federally regulated public and private grade crossings across Canada.

Railway companies are responsible for the safety of their rail line infrastructure, railway equipment and operations. This includes ongoing inspection, testing and maintenance programs in accordance with regulatory requirements, as well as any particular operating and environmental conditions.

Transport Canada’s oversight role includes monitoring railway companies for compliance with the RSA, its rules and regulations through audits and inspections.

The Department uses a risk-based approach to planning its oversight activities, which includes conducting audits and inspections that are planned annually, reviewed regularly, and revised as required using evidence-based risk indicators.

It is designed to address the greatest risks rather than simply the number of regulatory interventions and actions.

It examines evidence-based risk indicators to determine and plan the appropriate level of monitoring and inspections. Common risk indicators include accident investigations, safety records, results of previous inspections and safety studies.

2. Alternative options

In conclusion, experience has shown that voluntary standards usually result in low levels of compliance, or disputes over responsibility.

3. Proposed Grade Crossings Regulations (recommended option)

After consultations and following evaluations of the options available, Transport Canada concluded that the proposed Regulations are the most viable method for improving crossing safety. These proposed Regulations would establish engineering standards and clarify the roles and responsibilities for road authorities and railway companies regarding grade crossings.

The proposed approach has the following advantages over the other options outlined above:

Benefits and costs

A detailed cost-benefit analysis (CBA) of the proposed Regulations was prepared. The CBA examined the current situation or baseline scenario and compared it to the expected situation with the proposed Regulations in place, over a 20-year time period.

In the baseline scenario, it was assumed that collision rates would continue to decline over the next 20 years as they have over the past, as a result of continued decreases in the number of crossings on federally regulated railway lines, crossing improvements funded by the Grade Crossing Improvement Program, continued voluntary adoption of some GCSs, and continuing efforts to educate the public and increase public awareness of crossing safety.

In order to assess the impact of the provisions of the proposed Regulations, Transport Canada conducted a sampling exercise in the summer of 2011. This exercise provided key information to better assess the costs and benefits of the CBA.

For the proposed Regulations, the CBA modelled the expected reduction in the number of collisions at each grade crossing compared to that of the baseline scenario. To estimate the decrease in collisions, the CBA considered the incremental effect of each additional safety feature that would be part of the standards under the proposed Regulations on the collision rate.

The CBA followed a seven-step process to estimate the effect of new safety features at a grade crossing on the rate of collisions of the whole population of grade crossings:

  1. Estimate the expected baseline collision frequency for each type of crossing included in the Transport Canada sampling exercise under existing conditions.
  2. Determine the collision modification factor for the improvements to be made to meet the standards.
  3. Using the estimate from Step 2, determine the expected collision reduction at the specific crossing.
  4. Determine the expected collision reduction due to safety improvements to non-inspected items at the specific crossing.
  5. Based on Step 3 and Step 4, determine the total expected collision reduction for the sample population.
  6. Determine the expected collision reduction for the total crossing population.
  7. Consider the effects of phased-in implementation.

Not all collisions at grade crossings involve railway equipment, thus they are not always captured in TSB statistics. In order to estimate the reduction in the number of collisions not involving railway equipment at federally regulated crossings resulting from the implementation of the standards at non-compliant crossings, data from the TSB and from Transport Canada’s National Collision Data Base (NCDB) were compared for the period between 1998 and 2002. Based on this analysis, a ratio of the number of collisions not involving railway equipment to the number of collisions involving railway equipment was derived.

Summary results

The proposed Regulations, as calculated in 2012 for a 20-year horizon, are estimated to generate $261 million in net present value (NPV) benefit to Canada. Overall, compared to the baseline scenario of maintaining the current regulatory regime, the proposed Regulations are expected to result in 956 fewer collisions, 109 fewer fatalities and 149 fewer serious injuries. Furthermore, the proposed Regulations are expected to prevent 35 derailments, 845 instances of damage to railway equipment, and 4 968 cases of damage to road vehicles.

Table 1: Cost-benefit statement

Costs, benefits and distribution

Annual Totals

Total Cumulative Present Value (PV)

Annualized Average

2012

2031

A. Quantified impacts (in thousands of CAN$, 2012 constant dollars)

Benefits

Prevented fatalities

Grade crossing users

$4,070

$42,550

$332,723

$33,888

Prevented injuries

Grade crossing users

$336

$3,255

$26,435

$2,692

Prevented derailments

Railway companies

$100

$1,909

$10,997

$1,120

Prevented incidents of railway damage

Railway companies

$21

$264

$1,872

$191

Prevented incidents of vehicle damage

Grade crossing users

$172

$2,180

$15,435

$1,571

Total

$4,700

$50,158

$387,453

$39,462

Costs

Upgrading existing grade crossings to standards

Railway companies, provinces, municipalities, Aboriginal bands, private authorities

$26,459

$5,157

$126,726

$13,457

Total

$26,459

$4,924

$126,726

$13,457

Net benefits 

–$21,760

$45,234

$260,727

$26,005

B. Quantified impacts in non-$ (monetized in Section A)

 

Annual Totals

Total

Annualized Average

2012

2031

Impact on Canadians and railway companies

Prevented collisions involving railway equipment

6.0

54.1

955.9

47.8

Prevented collisions not involving railway equipment

13.9

175.8

2,922.8

146.1

Prevented fatalities

0.5

6.0

108.9

5.4

Prevented injuries

0.8

8.0

149.3

7.5

Prevented derailments

0.1

2.5

34.8

1.7

Prevented incidents of railway damage

4.0

50.9

845.4

42.3

Prevented incidents of vehicle damage

23.6

298.9

4,968.1

248.4

C. Qualitative impacts

Positive

  • Clear roles and responsibilities and improved accountability
  • National consistency of standards
  • Improved enforceability of the RSA
  • Improved knowledge of crossing conditions and improved collaboration between parties
  • Improved corridor fluidity leading to increased transportation system efficiency
  • Improved effectiveness of the Grade Crossing Improvement Program

Negative

  • Cost of new grade separation, reduced train speeds or purchase of right to a crossing
  • Minor additional costs over current practice associated with planned alterations or operational changes
  • Railway company costs for operational control circuits to provide consistent approach warning times at a few crossings
  • Minor railway company costs for relocation of crossing signs
  • Minor road authority costs at a few crossings for advisory speed tabs
  • Minor additional costs over current practice for temporary protection measures
  • Minor additional costs over current practice for out-of-service railway lines

The costs of the proposed Regulations would be borne by railway companies as well as road authorities (provinces, municipalities and Aboriginal bands) and private authorities. It was assumed that costs at urban public crossings (approximately 36% of public crossings) would be borne by municipalities and that costs at rural public crossings (approximately 64% of public crossings) would be borne by provincial governments or Aboriginal bands.

There are 95 federally regulated grade crossings where the road authority is an Aboriginal band. Of these, 84 are public crossings. Costs at rural public crossings were separated between provincial governments and Aboriginal bands using these data.

Table 2: Present value of costs by stakeholder ($ thousands)

 

Railway Companies

Provinces

Municipalities

Aboriginal Bands

Private Authorities

All Stakeholders

Present value cost ($000)

$99,306

$17,159

$10,088

$170

$3

$126,726

% of total

78.4%

13.5%

8%

0.1%

0%

100%

Over 78% of the overall costs of the proposed Regulations would be borne by railway companies. Some of these costs would be offset by the value of benefits associated with fewer collisions, resulting in reduced property damage and lower derailment costs. The present value of these benefits over the 20-year time horizon is expected to be $12.9 million.

A sensitivity analysis was conducted to test the robustness of the CBA results based on variations in some key parameters. Twenty-seven scenarios were tested in the sensitivity analysis, based on various combinations of collision reduction, discount rate and implementation cost. Overall, the sensitivity analysis demonstrated that the proposed Regulations are likely to result in a significant positive net present value, even with deviations from the expected levels of key parameters.

The full cost-benefit analysis is available upon request.

“One-for-One” Rule

The normal application of the “One-for-One” Rule would not apply because the proposed Regulations are critical to protecting the public safety of Canadians. Therefore, the proposal would be carved out from the application of the Rule.

Transport Canada estimated that the administrative burden associated with the proposed Regulations would have an annualized value of $149,900, which would be distributed as follows:

CN 46.6% $69,853

CP 47.7% $71,502

VIA Rail 0.72% $1,079

Other 4.98% $7,465

The increase in administrative costs is derived from the sharing of information between the railway companies and the road authorities required in the proposed Regulations. The burden on railway companies will be to prepare and share written information regarding the safety attributes of their grade crossings. This sharing of information would allow road authorities to satisfy the safety requirements of the proposed Regulations and to foster a collaborative environment between the two parties responsible for safety at grade crossings. The administrative costs were calculated based on the information provided by members of the railway industry during consultations and taking into consideration that the information to be shared would only need to be provided once in the first five years for each of the 14 000 public grade crossings. It was assumed that it would take 1.5 hours to prepare and submit the written information, at an average hourly wage rate of $70/hour.

Small business lens

The Railway Association of Canada (RAC) identified that five of its members are small businesses, which represents approximately 0.214% of the total number of crossings. Therefore, the impact of the proposed Regulations is assumed to be very minimal.

However, since the proposed Regulations are safety-based under the authority of the RSA, it would not be appropriate to differentiate between small and large businesses when it comes to safety. Under any other alternative scenario, railway companies and road authorities would be less able to mitigate risks to Canadian safety.

Consultation

Transport Canada conducted extensive consultations on the proposed Regulations during three distinct stages: 1991–1995, 1999–2006 and 2011–2013. Stakeholders included the public, railway companies, and road authorities. Road authorities included associations, unions and other government departments.

From 1991 to 1995, consultations took place with provincial ministries of transportation, the RAC and member railway companies, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) and FCM member municipalities. As a result, Transport Canada drafted a policy and standards by the end of 1995. Further development of these drafts was put on hold pending the outcome of the Railway Safety Act review of 1995.

Between 1999 and 2003, stakeholder discussion forums were held across Canada. Working groups, comprising representatives of provinces, municipalities, railway companies, railway unions and the Canadian Federation of Agriculture, developed another version of the draft policy and standards (RTD-10). Since January 2003, interested stakeholders have followed a draft of the RTD-10 with respect to construction and alterations of grade crossings, even though stakeholders had remaining issues with some of its content.

From 2002 to 2006, a partnership with officials of railway companies and provincial and municipal road authorities developed a pilot project to test the safety evaluation processes and their efficiency. The pilot project led to the development of the Grade Crossing Safety Assessment Guidelines. Further evaluation established that the guidelines could not resolve all outstanding issues, such as roles and responsibilities. While the guide is still considered best practice, municipalities and railway companies did not consider it a cost-efficient means to address the safety shortcomings at all grade crossings.

Following these consultations, stakeholders were still concerned with respect to the standards, the roles and responsibilities, and the costs of the implementation of the regulatory proposal. Transport Canada revised the draft policy and the standards in an attempt to address these concerns and conducted a final round of national consultations with the public, road authorities, railway companies, associations, unions and other government departments.

On June 21, 2012, Transport Canada completed a series of targeted national consultation meetings with road authorities and railway companies. The consultation meetings constituted the second phase of a two-phase process that began with a 60-day online consultation conducted from January 30, 2012, to April 24, 2012, which was open to the public.

As a result of the comments received, Transport Canada extended its regulatory consultation process to the end of summer 2013 to continue bilateral discussions with main stakeholders on specific issues, including timing, costs, and blocked crossings. Modifications were made to the draft policy to minimize the financial impact on both road authorities and railway companies, while maintaining Transport Canada’s objective for safer grade crossings. Further discussions on blocked crossings took place between the RAC and the FCM, facilitated by Transport Canada, which resulted in a proposal that would foster collaboration between the parties, in keeping with the spirit of the RSA. Both the FCM and the RAC agree with the intent of the proposed Regulations in principle, but both requested that funding be made available to stakeholders to comply with the proposed Regulations.

Rationale

Under the current acts governing railway companies, public safety is still below the standards voluntarily set by Transport Canada and stakeholders. The proposed Regulations would address two main issues regarding grade crossing safety.

First, numerous reviews of the RSA identified that the multi-jurisdictional nature of grade crossings results in safety gaps, because road authorities and railway companies are not always clear on their responsibilities nor are they adequately sharing information about the changes in railway and roadway traffic. The current approach to managing safety at grade crossings requires collaboration between 32 railway companies, 1 460 municipal and provincial road authorities, 95 Aboriginal bands, and many individual private authorities. The proposed Regulations clearly define the roles and responsibilities of railway companies and road authorities, reducing the safety gap created by the lack of collaboration, information and understanding.

Secondly, although railway companies and road authorities are adhering to the voluntary standards on new grade crossings, existing crossings are brought up to the standards in the RTD-10 on an ad hoc basis only. To ensure that railway companies and road authorities are meeting the standards, the proposed Regulations would incorporate the GCS by reference, making them enforceable standards. The proposed Regulations that address obstruction of public crossings would improve safety by reducing risk-taking behaviour.

Based on the completed CBA, the overall result would be efficiently managed and safer grade crossings, consistent with other road and rail infrastructure safety standards in Canada. This would lead to reductions in collisions, fatalities, injuries, property damage, and possible environmental impacts that may result from a spill of dangerous commodities. All individuals who use grade crossings, whether they are pedestrians, in a vehicle or on a train, would benefit from improved safety.

In addition, the proposed Regulations would respond to TSB’s Watchlist concern that of the “risk of passenger trains colliding with vehicles remains too high in busy rail corridors,” including two TSB recommendations that the Department of Transport

Implementation, enforcement and service standards

Transport Canada has proposed that the proposed Regulations come into force on the day on which they are registered.

Transport Canada’s Rail Safety Compliance and Enforcement Policy (www.tc.gc.ca/eng/railsafety/policy-263.htm) would apply to the proposed Regulations. It provides guidance to Transport Canada officials involved in

A variety of promotion and enforcement tools would be used to foster compliance with the proposed Regulations and to respond to non-compliance and site-specific threats to safety. For grade crossings, this includes education and awareness activities in the form of presentations, information booths, pamphlets and guidelines at conferences, association meetings, directly with regulated parties as well as Web sites to improve understanding of requirements and promote safe practices with regulated parties.

Promotional and educational activities would also target organizations involved in developing the standards and guidelines that are incorporated by reference into the proposed Regulations. These include

Railway safety officers located in Transport Canada’s five regions would also play an important role in promoting compliance with the proposed Regulations through

Enforcement of the proposed Regulations and response to safety threats would include the following:

Upon summary conviction, the penalty in the case of a corporation would be a maximum fine of one million dollars, and in the case of an individual, the maximum fine would be $50,000, for each day of non-compliance.

Performance measurement and evaluation

Transport Canada would monitor the performance of the proposed Regulations through several metrics of their impact on public safety and compliance, including

Transport Canada would collect data on an ongoing basis from different sources. Through Rail Safety’s inspection programs, railway safety inspectors would obtain valuable information on various safety attributes of crossings. This data would then be inputted in Transport Canada’s Integrated Railway Information System (IRIS) database. Furthermore, the TSB and NCDB would continue to provide collision statistics and information.

Transport Canada would also apply the University of Waterloo’s Grade X model and other tools to support the identification of at-risk crossings for future funding programs that would improve the safety of high-risk grade crossings.

Transport Canada conducted a safety exercise over the summer of 2011 to assess the impact of the provisions of the proposed Regulations. This information would serve as a baseline for developing the annual national inspection programs and the compliance monitoring programs. Results from these programs would also feed into the Rail Safety Integrated Gateway (RSIG) program, which in turn would direct Rail Safety’s oversight activities based on business risk management principles. All these programs would play an integral role in Rail Safety’s monitoring and oversight activities and more so in this performance measurement and evaluation plan.

Contact

Marie-Josée Goulet
Chief Engineer
Rail Safety Operations (ASRO)
Safety and Security
Transport Canada
427 Laurier Avenue West
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0N5
Telephone: 613-990-5769
Fax: 613-990-7767
Email: railsafety@tc.gc.ca

PROPOSED REGULATORY TEXT

Notice is given, pursuant to subsection 50(1) (see footnote a) of the Railway Safety Act (see footnote b), that the Governor in Council proposes, pursuant to subsection 7(1) (see footnote c), section 7.1 (see footnote d), subsections 18(1) (see footnote e) and 18(2) (see footnote f), paragraph 23.1(1)(a) (see footnote g), subsection 24(1) (see footnote h) and sections 37 (see footnote i) and 47 of that Act, to make the annexed Grade Crossings Regulations.

Any interested person may make representations to the Minister of Transport concerning the proposed Regulations within 90 days after the date of publication of this notice. All such representations must cite the Canada Gazette, Part I, and the date of publication of this notice, and be sent to the Operations Management Branch, Railway Safety Directorate, Department of Transport, 14th Floor, 427 Laurier Avenue West, Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0N5.

Ottawa, January 28, 2014

JURICA ČAPKUN
Assistant Clerk of the Privy Council

TABLE OF CONTENTS

(This table is not part of the Regulations.)

GRADE CROSSINGS REGULATIONS

INTERPRETATION

1. Definitions

APPLICATION

2. Application

COMPLIANCE

3. Public grade crossing

INFORMATION SHARING
RAILWAY COMPANY

4. Information

5. Change

6. Railway design speed

7. Average annual daily railway movements

8. Whistling

9. Change of railway company

10. Date and contact information

ROAD AUTHORITY

11. Information

12. Change

13. Road design speed

14. Interconnected traffic control device

15. Change of road authority

16. Date and contact information

SIGHTLINES
STANDARDS

17. Existing grade crossing

18. New grade crossing

19. Warning system

MAINTENANCE

20. Maintenance of sightlines

OBSTRUCTION OF SIGHTLINES

21. Buildings and structures

22. Things placed on land

23. Trees and brush

24. Unattended railway equipment

CHANGES

25. Changes to sightlines

26. Road design speed

NEW GRADE CROSSING
PROHIBITION

27. Construction

DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION

28. Application

29. Crossing surface

30. Road approach

31. Location

32. Departure times

33. Design vehicle

34. Stopping sight distance

SIGNS AND WARNING SYSTEM
Public Grade Crossing
Application

35. Application

Signs

36. Railway Crossing sign

37. Emergency Notification sign

38. Stop sign

39. Stop Ahead sign

40. Railway Crossing Ahead and Advisory Speed Tab signs

41. Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign

Warning System

42. Warning system

43. Sidewalk, path or trail

44. Warning system with a gate

45. Light distribution and intensity

46. Interconnected traffic signal

Private Grade Crossing
Application

47. Application

Signs

48. Stop sign

49. Stop Ahead sign

50. Railway Crossing Ahead and Advisory Speed Tab signs

51. Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign

Warning System

52. Warning system

53. Sidewalk, path or trail

54. Warning system with a gate

55. Light distribution and intensity

56. Interconnected traffic signal

EXISTING GRADE CROSSING
PUBLIC GRADE CROSSING
Timeline

57. Basic requirements

58. Additional requirements

Crossing Surface and Road Approach

59. Crossing surface

60. Road approach

Signs

61. Railway Crossing sign

62. Emergency Notification sign

63. Stop sign

64. Stop Ahead sign

65. Railway Crossing Ahead and Advisory Speed Tab signs

66. Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign

Warning System

67. Light distribution and intensity

68. Warning time

69. Cut-out circuits

70. Directional stick circuit

PRIVATE GRADE CROSSING
Timeline

71. Basic requirements

Crossing Surface and Road Approach

72. Crossing surface

73. Road approach

Signs

74. Stop sign

75. Stop Ahead sign

76. Railway Crossing Ahead and Advisory Speed Tab signs

77. Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign

Warning System

78. Light distribution and intensity

79. Warning time

80. Cut-out circuits

81. Directional stick circuit

CHANGES TO GRADE CROSSING

82. New warning system

83. Change to road geometry

84. Change to road approach

85. Interconnected traffic signals

86. Change in design vehicle

GENERAL REQUIREMENTS
INSTRUMENT HOUSING

87. Locked housing

INSPECTION, TESTING AND MAINTENANCE

88. Design plan — railway company

89. Initial installation

90. Periodic inspection and testing

91. Interconnected traffic control device

OBSTRUCTION OF GRADE CROSSING
Prohibitions

92. Unnecessary activation of warning system

Safety Concern

93. Public grade crossing

Emergency Vehicles

94. Passage of emergency vehicles

STOPPING ON CROSSING SURFACE

95. Measures

CONSTRUCTION OF INTERSECTION OR ACCESS ROAD

96. Intersection or access road

TEMPORARY PROTECTION MEASURES

97. Threat or interference

98. Failure or malfunction

AUDIBLE WARNINGS

99. Prescribed requirements

100. Public grade crossing — motor vehicles

101. Public grade crossing — sidewalk, path or trail

102. Stop and proceed

RECORDS
INFORMATION SHARING

103. Railway company

INSPECTION, TESTING AND MAINTENANCE

104. Content

TEMPORARY PROTECTION MEASURES

105. Failure or malfunction

REPEALS

106. Highway Crossings Protective Devices Regulations

107. Railway-Highway Crossing at Grade Regulations

COMING INTO FORCE

108. Day of registration

GRADE CROSSINGS REGULATIONS

INTERPRETATION

Definitions

1. (1) The following definitions apply in these Regulations.

“Advisory Speed Tab sign”
« panonceau Vitesse recommandée »

“Advisory Speed Tab sign” means the sign referred to in article 8.2.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

“average annual daily railway movements”
« moyenne annuelle de mouvements ferroviaires quotidiens »

“average annual daily railway movements” means the number of movements of engines, or engines coupled with railway equipment, across a grade crossing in a year, divided by the number of days in that year.

“average annual daily traffic”
« débit journalier moyen annuel »

“average annual daily traffic” means the number of motor vehicles that cross a grade crossing in a year, divided by the number of days in that year.

“crossing surface”
« surface de croisement »

“crossing surface” means the part of a road that lies between the ends of a railway tie and that has the width shown in Figure 5-1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

“design vehicle”
« véhicule type »

“design vehicle” means the vehicle referred to in section 1.2.4 of the Geometric Design Guide.

“Emergency Notification sign”
« panneau Avis d’urgence »

“Emergency Notification sign” means a sign that provides information on the location of the grade crossing and the railway company’s emergency telephone number.

“existing grade crossing”
« passage à niveau existant »

“existing grade crossing” means a grade crossing for which actual construction started before the day on which these Regulations came into force.

“Geometric Design Guide”
« Guide de conception géometrique »

“Geometric Design Guide” means the Geometric Design Guide for Canadian Roads, published by the Transportation Association of Canada and dated September 1999, and the amendment dated January 2002.

“grade crossing”
« passage à niveau »

“grade crossing” means a road crossing where a road, at grade, crosses one line of railway, or crosses two or more lines of railway, none of which are separated by more than 30 m.

“Grade Crossings Standards”
« Normes sur les passages à niveau »

“Grade Crossings Standards” means the Grade Crossings Standards published by the Department of Transport, dated February 2014.

“new grade crossing”
« nouveau passage à niveau »

“new grade crossing” means a grade crossing for which actual construction started on or after the day on which these Regulations came into force.

“Number of Tracks sign”
« panneau Nombre de voies ferrées »

“Number of Tracks sign” means the sign referred to in article 8.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

“Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign”
« panneau Préparez-vous à arrêter à un passage à niveau »

“Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign” means the sign referred to in article 18 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

“private authority”
« autorité privée »

“private authority” means a person, other than a road authority, who has a right with respect to a private grade crossing.

“private grade crossing”
« passage à niveau privé »

“private grade crossing” means a grade crossing that is not a public grade crossing.

“public grade crossing”
« passage à niveau public »

“public grade crossing” means a grade crossing whose road is opened or maintained by a road authority and is designed for public use.

“Railway Crossing Ahead sign”
« panneau Signal avancé d’un passage à niveau »

“Railway Crossing Ahead sign” means the sign referred to in article 8.2.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

“Railway Crossing sign”
« panneau Passage à niveau »

“Railway Crossing sign” means the sign referred to in article 8.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

“railway design speed”
« vitesse de référence sur la voie ferrée »

“railway design speed” means the railway equipment speed used by a railway company in the design of a grade crossing.

“road approach”
« abord routier »

“road approach” means the part of a road, other than the crossing surface, that lies between the point that marks the start of the stopping sight distance and the point that marks the front of the design vehicle when it is past the clearance point as shown in Figure 10-1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

“road design speed”
« vitesse de référence sur la route »

“road design speed” means the motor vehicle speed used by a road authority in the design of a grade crossing.

“sightlines”
« lignes de visibilité »

“sightlines” means the lines of sight referred to in sections 17 to 19, as applicable.

“Stop Ahead sign”
« panneau Signal avancé d’arrêt »

“Stop Ahead sign” means the sign referred to in article 8.3.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

“Stop sign”
« panneau Stop »

“Stop sign” means the sign referred to in article 8.4.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

“stopping sight distance”
« distance de visibilité d’arrêt »

“stopping sight distance” means the distance referred to in section 1.2.5.2 of the Geometric Design Guide.

“traffic control device”
« dispositif de contrôle de la circulation »

“traffic control device” means

“warning system”
« système d’avertissement »

“warning system” means an automated system, other than a traffic signal, that indicates the approach or presence of railway equipment at a grade crossing, and that is composed of light units, bells, gates, operating mechanisms and control circuits.

Separate grade crossings

(2) For the purposes of these Regulations, two adjacent and separate roads that cross a line of railway are considered to be separate grade crossings.

APPLICATION

Application

2. These Regulations apply in respect of public grade crossings and private grade crossings.

COMPLIANCE

Public grade crossing

3. (1) Unless otherwise specified in an order of the Agency under section 101 of the Canada Transportation Act, in the case of a public grade crossing

Private grade crossing

(2) Unless otherwise specified in an order of the Agency under section 103 of the Canada Transportation Act, in the case of a private grade crossing

INFORMATION SHARING

RAILWAY COMPANY

Information

4. (1) A railway company must provide a road authority, in writing, with the following information with respect to a public grade crossing:

Timeline

(2) The information must be provided, in respect of a new or existing grade crossing, on receipt of a notice referred to in section 3 of the Notice of Railway Works Regulations and, in respect of an existing grade crossing, before the day that is five years after the day on which these Regulations come into force.

Change

5. In the case of a change referred to in paragraph 25(1)(a) or (b) or section 82, the railway company must provide the road authority, not later than 60 days before the day on which the change begins, with the details of the change and with the information set out in subsection 4(1) relating to the change.

Railway design speed

6. A railway company must notify a road authority in writing of an increase in the railway design speed — or a decrease in that speed by 16 km/h or more — at a public grade crossing not later than 60 days before the day on which the increase or decrease takes effect, and must specify in the notice the precise location of the grade crossing and the new railway design speed.

Average annual daily railway movements

7. A railway company must provide a road authority with the average annual daily railway movements when that value increases by 50% or more relative to the previous value provided to the road authority.

Whistling

8. If a railway company stops requiring the use of a whistle at a grade crossing, it must notify the road authority in writing of that change not later than 30 days after the day on which the change is made.

Change of railway company

9. If a railway company changes, the new railway company must provide a road authority with the information set out in subsection 4(1) before it operates or allows the operation of railway equipment at a public grade crossing.

Date and contact information

10. The information referred to in sections 4 to 9 must include the date on which it is sent, the name of the railway company, and the address and telephone number of the office that provides the information.

ROAD AUTHORITY

Information

11. (1) A road authority must provide a railway company, in writing, with the following information with respect to a public grade crossing:

Timeline

(2) The information must be provided, in respect of a new or existing grade crossing, on receipt of a notice referred to in section 3 of the Notice of Railway Works Regulations and, in respect of an existing grade crossing, before the day that is five years after the day on which these Regulations come into force.

Change

12. In the case of a change referred to in paragraph 25(1)(c), section 26 or sections 83 to 86, the road authority must provide the railway company, not later than 60 days before the day on which the change begins, with the details of the change and with the information referred to in subsection 11(1) relating to the change.

Road design speed

13. A road authority must notify a railway company in writing of an increase in the road design speed — or a decrease in that speed by 16 km/h or more — at a public grade crossing not later than 60 days before the day on which the increase or decrease takes effect, and must include the information set out in paragraphs 11(1)(a), (d), (h) and (i).

Interconnected traffic control device

14. A road authority must provide a railway company with the information set out in paragraphs 11(1)(a), (k) and (l) not later than 60 days before the day on which an interconnected traffic signal referred to in article 19 of the Grade Crossings Standards, or a Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign, is installed on a road approach or is changed.

Change of road authority

15. If a road authority changes, the new road authority must provide a railway company with the information referred to in subsection 11(1) not later than 30 days after the day on which the road authority changes.

Date and contact information

16. The information referred to in sections 11 to 15 must include the date on which it is sent, the name and address of the road authority, and the name and telephone number of a contact person.

SIGHTLINES

STANDARDS

Existing grade crossing

17. The sightlines for an existing grade crossing must meet the standards set out in article 7 of the Grade Crossings Standards beginning on the day that is five years after the day on which these Regulations come into force, but are not required to take into account any railway equipment that is moving or attended.

New grade crossing

18. The sightlines for a new grade crossing must meet the standards set out in article 7 of the Grade Crossings Standards and must take into account any railway equipment that is moving or attended.

Warning system

19. Despite sections 17 and 18,

MAINTENANCE

Maintenance of sightlines

20. Sightlines must be maintained to meet the requirements of sections 17 to 19, as applicable, including by the removal of trees and brush that obstruct the sightlines.

OBSTRUCTION OF SIGHTLINES

Buildings and structures

21. A person must not erect, on land adjoining the land on which a line of railway is situated, a building or other structure, not being a railway work, that will obstruct the sightlines.

Things placed on land

22. A person must not place, on land adjoining the land on which a line of railway is situated, anything that will obstruct the sightlines.

Trees and brush

23. A person who grows trees and brush, or allows them to grow, on land in the vicinity of a grade crossing must remove them if they obstruct the sightlines.

Unattended railway equipment

24. A company must not leave unattended any railway equipment that obstructs the sightlines.

CHANGES

Changes to sightlines

25. (1) The requirements of sections 18 or 19, as applicable, must be met if

Railway design speed

(2) In the case of a change referred to in paragraph (1)(b), the sightline requirements must be met before the increase in the railway speed takes effect.

Road design speed

26. If there is a change to the road classification set out in Chapter 1.3 of the Geometric Design Guide as a result of an increase in the road design speed, the sightline requirements of sections 18 or 19, as applicable, must be met before the increase in the road design speed takes effect.

NEW GRADE CROSSING

PROHIBITION

Construction

27. A person must not construct a grade crossing if

DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION

Application

28. Sections 29 to 34 apply to the design and construction of a new grade crossing.

Crossing surface

29. The crossing surface must meet the standards set out in article 5.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Road approach

30. A road approach must meet the standards set out in article 6 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Location

31. The location of a public grade crossing must meet the standards set out in article 11 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Departure times

32. Departure times must be calculated in accordance with article 10.3 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Design vehicle

33. A design vehicle must be selected for use in the design of the grade crossing.

Stopping sight distance

34. The stopping sight distance must be calculated in accordance with section 1.2.5.2 of the Geometric Design Guide.

SIGNS AND WARNING SYSTEM
Public Grade Crossing
Application

Application

35. Sections 36 to 46 apply to a new grade crossing that is a public grade crossing.

Signs

Railway Crossing sign

36. (1) A Railway Crossing sign must be installed in accordance with the standards set out in articles 8.1.6 to 8.1.10 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Number of Tracks sign

(2) If there is more than one track at a grade crossing, a Number of Tracks sign must be installed as shown in Figure 8-3 or 8-4 of the Grade Crossings Standards, as appropriate.

Standards

(3) The Railway Crossing sign and the Number of Tracks sign must meet the standards set out in articles 8.1.1 to 8.1.5 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Emergency Notification sign

37. An Emergency Notification sign must be installed at a grade crossing in accordance with the standards set out in article 8.5 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Stop sign

38. (1) A Stop sign must be installed at a grade crossing without a warning system if the speed of a motor vehicle on the road approach needs to be reduced to less than 15 km/h in order to correspond to the road design speed.

Standards

(2) The Stop sign and its installation must meet the standards set out in article 8.4 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Stop Ahead sign

39. A Stop Ahead sign must be installed on a road approach if the Stop sign is not clearly visible within the stopping sight distance, and must meet the standards set out in article 8.3 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Railway Crossing Ahead and Advisory Speed Tab signs

40. (1) A Railway Crossing Ahead sign with an Advisory Speed Tab sign must be installed on a road approach if

Standards

(2) The Railway Crossing Ahead sign and the Advisory Speed Tab sign must meet the standards set out in article 8.2 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign

41. (1) A Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign must be installed if

Standards

(2) The Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign must meet the standards set out in article 18 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Warning System

Warning system

42. (1) A warning system must be installed at a grade crossing that corresponds to the specifications set out in article 9.1.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards, and must meet the standards set out in articles 12 to 16 of those Standards.

Exception

(2) In the case of a grade crossing at which railway equipment is required to stop, a traffic signal may be installed at the grade crossing, or the railway company may manually protect the grade crossing, instead of installing a warning system.

Sidewalk, path or trail

43. A warning system must be installed at a grade crossing that corresponds to the specifications set out in article 9.1.2 of the Grade Crossings Standards, and must meet the standards set out in articles 12 to 16 of those Standards.

Warning system with a gate

44. (1) A warning system with a gate must be installed at a grade crossing that corresponds to the specifications set out in article 9.2 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Gate arm clearance time

(2) The gate arm of a warning system must start to descend at the end of the time calculated in accordance with article 10.4 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Light distribution and intensity

45. (1) The distribution and intensity of the light from a warning system must meet the standards set out in article 13 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Alignment of light units

(2) The alignment of each set of light units must meet the standards set out in articles 14.2 to 14.7 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Interconnected traffic signal

46. (1) A warning system installed at a grade crossing that corresponds to the specifications set out in article 19.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards must be interconnected with the traffic signal on the road approach, and must meet the standards set out in articles 19.2 to 19.4 of those Standards.

Traffic control device

(2) In the case of a grade crossing that corresponds to the specifications set out in article 19.1(b) of the Grade Crossings Standards, a traffic control device that meets the standards set out in article 19.5 of those Standards may be installed instead of an interconnected traffic signal.

Private Grade Crossing
Application

Application

47. Sections 48 to 56 apply to a new grade crossing that is a private grade crossing.

Signs

Stop sign

48. (1) A Stop sign must be installed at a grade crossing without a warning system if the speed of a motor vehicle on a road approach needs to be reduced to less than 15 km/h in order to correspond to the road design speed.

Standards

(2) The Stop sign and its installation must meet the standards set out in article 8.4 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Stop Ahead sign

49. A Stop Ahead sign must be installed on a road approach if the Stop sign is not clearly visible within the stopping sight distance, and must meet the standards set out in article 8.3 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Railway Crossing Ahead and Advisory Speed Tab signs

50. (1) A Railway Crossing Ahead sign with an Advisory Speed Tab sign must be installed on a road approach if

Standards

(2) The Railway Crossing Ahead sign and the Advisory Speed Tab sign must meet the standards set out in article 8.2 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign

51. (1) A Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign must be installed if

Standards

(2) The Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign must meet the standards set out in article 18 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Warning System

Warning system

52. (1) A warning system must be installed at a grade crossing that corresponds to the specifications set out in articles 9.1.1(a) to (c) of the Grade Crossings Standards, and must meet the standards set out in articles 12 to 16 of those Standards.

Alternative — limited use

(2) In the case of a grade crossing that provides access to fewer than three private dwelling-places and that does not provide access to a business, a limited use warning system, and signs, that meet the standards set out in Appendix B of the Grade Crossings Standards may be installed at a grade crossing instead of the warning system referred to in subsection (1).

Alternative — walk light

(3) A limited use warning system with a walk light, and signs, that meet the standards set out in Appendix C of the Grade Crossings Standards may be installed at a grade crossing, instead of the warning system referred to in subsection (1) or (2), if

Exception

(4) In the case of a grade crossing at which railway equipment is required to stop, a traffic signal may be installed at the grade crossing, or the railway company may manually protect the grade crossing, instead of installing a warning system.

Sidewalk, path or trail

53. A warning system must be installed at a grade crossing that corresponds to the specifications set out in article 9.1.2 of the Grade Crossings Standards, and must meet the standards set out in articles 12 to 16 of those Standards.

Warning system with a gate

54. (1) A warning system with a gate must be installed at a grade crossing that corresponds to the specifications set out in article 9.2 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Gate arm clearance time

(2) The gate arm of a warning system must start to descend at the end of the time calculated in accordance with article 10.4 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Light distribution and intensity

55. (1) The distribution and intensity of the light from a warning system must meet the standards set out in article 13 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Alignment of light units

(2) The alignment of each set of light units must meet the standards set out in articles 14.2 to 14.7 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Interconnected traffic signal

56. (1) A warning system installed at a grade crossing that corresponds to the specifications set out in article 19.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards must be interconnected with the traffic signal on the road approach, and must meet the standards set out in articles 19.2 to 19.4 of those Standards.

Traffic control device

(2) In the case of a grade crossing that corresponds to the specifications set out in article 19.1(b) of the Grade Crossings Standards, a traffic control device that meets the standards set out in article 19.5 of those Standards may be installed instead of an interconnected traffic signal.

EXISTING GRADE CROSSING

PUBLIC GRADE CROSSING
Timeline

Basic requirements

57. An existing grade crossing that is a public grade crossing must meet the standards set out in Part B of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Additional requirements

58. In addition to meeting the requirements of section 57, an existing grade crossing that is a public grade crossing must meet the requirements of sections 59 to 70 beginning on the day that is five years after the day on which these Regulations come into force.

Crossing Surface and Road Approach

Crossing surface

59. A crossing surface must meet the standards set out in article 5.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Road approach

60. A road approach must meet the standards set out in article 6.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Signs

Railway Crossing sign

61. (1) A Railway Crossing sign must be installed in accordance with the standards set out in articles 8.1.6 to 8.1.10 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Number of Tracks sign

(2) If there is more than one track at a grade crossing, a Number of Tracks sign must be installed as shown in Figure 8-3 or 8-4 of the Grade Crossings Standards, as appropriate.

Standards

(3) The Railway Crossing sign and the Number of Tracks sign must meet the standards set out in articles 8.1.1 and 8.1.2 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Emergency Notification sign

62. An Emergency Notification sign must be installed at a grade crossing in accordance with the standards set out in article 8.5 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Stop sign

63. (1) A Stop sign must be installed at a grade crossing without a warning system if the speed of a motor vehicle on the road approach needs to be reduced to less than 15 km/h in order to correspond to the road design speed.

Standards

(2) The Stop sign and its installation must meet the standards set out in article 8.4 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Stop Ahead sign

64. A Stop Ahead sign must be installed on a road approach if the Stop sign is not clearly visible within the stopping sight distance, and must meet the standards set out in article 8.3 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Railway Crossing Ahead and Advisory Speed Tab signs

65. (1) A Railway Crossing Ahead sign with an Advisory Speed Tab sign must be installed on a road approach if

Standards

(2) The Railway Crossing Ahead sign and the Advisory Speed Tab sign must meet the standards set out in article 8.2 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign

66. (1) A Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign must be installed if

Standards

(2) The Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign must meet the standards set out in article 18 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Warning System

Light distribution and intensity

67. (1) The distribution and intensity of the light from a warning system must meet the standards set out in article 13 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Alignment of light units

(2) The alignment of each set of light units must meet the standards set out in articles 14.2 to 14.7 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Warning time

68. Before railway equipment reaches a crossing surface, the warning system must operate for the period of time set out in articles 16.1.1(a) to (c) and 16.2.2 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Cut-out circuits

69. If railway equipment is operated, left standing or stopped in a manner that regularly causes, or will regularly cause, the activation of the warning system other than for the purposes of crossing that grade crossing, the warning system must contain circuits that meet the standards set out in article 16.3.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Directional stick circuit

70. The directional stick circuit of a warning system must meet the standards set out in article 16.4 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

PRIVATE GRADE CROSSING
Timeline

Basic requirements

71. An existing grade crossing that is a private grade crossing must meet the standards referred to in sections 72 to 81 beginning on the day that is five years after the day on which these Regulations come into force.

Crossing Surface and Road Approach

Crossing surface

72. A crossing surface must meet the standards set out in article 5.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Road approach

73. A road approach must meet the standards set out in article 6.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Signs

Stop sign

74. (1) A Stop sign must be installed at a grade crossing without a warning system if the speed of a motor vehicle on the road approach needs to be reduced to less than 15 km/h in order to correspond to the road design speed.

Standards

(2) The Stop sign and its installation must meet the standards set out in article 8.4 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Stop Ahead sign

75. A Stop Ahead sign must be installed on a road approach if the Stop sign is not clearly visible within the stopping sight distance, and must meet the standards set out in article 8.3 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Railway Crossing Ahead and Advisory Speed Tab signs

76. (1) A Railway Crossing Ahead sign with an Advisory Speed Tab sign must be installed on a road approach if

Standards

(2) The Railway Crossing Ahead sign and Advisory Speed Tab sign must meet the standards set out in article 8.2 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign

77. (1) A Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign must be installed if

Standards

(2) The Prepare to Stop at Railway Crossing sign must meet the standards set out in article 18 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Warning System

Light distribution and intensity

78. (1) The distribution and intensity of the light from a warning system must meet the standards set out in article 13 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Alignment of light units

(2) The alignment of each set of light units must meet the standards set out in articles 14.2 to 14.7 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Warning time

79. Before railway equipment reaches a crossing surface, the warning system must operate for the period of time set out in articles 16.1.1(a) to (c) and 16.2.2 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Cut-out circuits

80. If railway equipment is operated, left standing or stopped in a manner that regularly causes, or will regularly cause, the activation of the warning system other than for the purposes of crossing that grade crossing, the warning system must contain circuits that meet the standards set out in article 16.3.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Directional stick circuit

81. The directional stick circuit of a warning system must meet the standards set out in article 16.4 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

CHANGES TO GRADE CROSSING

New warning system

82. (1) If a warning system is installed at a grade crossing, it must meet the standards set out in articles 12 to 16 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Modification or installation of component

(2) When a component of a warning system is modified or is installed — except in the case of a replacement in kind for maintenance purposes — the component must meet the applicable standards set out in articles 12 to 16 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Increase in railway design speed — timeline

(3) If the installation of a warning system — or the modification or installation of a component of a warning system — results from an increase in the railway design speed, the warning system or component must meet the standards set out in articles 12 to 16 of the Grade Crossings Standards before the increase in the railway design speed takes effect.

Change to road geometry

83. (1) If the location, gradient or crossing angle of a grade crossing is changed, article 6 — except for article 6.4 — and article 11 of the Grade Crossings Standards must be applied in a manner that improves the overall safety of the grade crossing.

Prohibition — gradient

(2) It is prohibited to increase the absolute gradient of the road approach to an existing grade crossing if the gradient does not meet the standards set out in article 6.3 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Change to road approach

84. If the number or width of traffic lanes of a road approach to a grade crossing is increased, or a shoulder is added or the shoulder’s width is increased, the grade crossing must meet the standards set out in articles 5.1 and 6.4 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Interconnected traffic signals

85. If a traffic signal is installed within the distance specified in article 19.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards, the warning system must be interconnected with the traffic signal and must meet the standards set out in articles 19.2 to 19.4 of those Standards.

Change in design vehicle

86. If the design vehicle that is selected for use in the design of the grade crossing changes, the period of time that the warning system must operate before railway equipment reaches the crossing surface must meet the standards set out in article 16.1 of Grade Crossings Standards.

GENERAL REQUIREMENTS

INSTRUMENT HOUSING

Locked housing

87. A railway company must ensure that the instrument housing for a warning system is locked when it is unattended.

INSPECTION, TESTING AND MAINTENANCE

Design plan — railway company

88. (1) The design plan for a warning system must be kept at the location of the grade crossing and must contain the following information:

Maintenance of warning system

(2) The warning system must be maintained in accordance with the design plan.

Copy of design plan

(3) When a component of the warning system is modified or installed, a design plan reflecting the modification or installation must be prepared before the work begins, and a copy of the design plan must be kept at the location of the grade crossing until it is replaced by the revised design plan referred to in subsection (4).

Revised design plan

(4) When the work is complete, a revised design plan that meets the requirements of subsection (1) must, within 6 months after the day on which the modification or installation takes place, be placed at the location of the grade crossing.

Initial installation

89. (1) Immediately following the initial installation of a warning system, but before it is placed in service, all of the components of the warning system must be inspected and tested in accordance with article 17.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Modification or installation of a component

(2) Immediately following the modification or installation of a component of the warning system, but before the warning system is placed in service, the component and all other components that are directly affected by that modification or installation must be inspected and tested in accordance with article 17.1 of the Grade Crossings Standards.

Environmental conditions

(3) In the event of severe weather or other environmental conditions that may affect the functioning of the warning system or its components, the warning system or the components must be inspected within a reasonable period of time to ensure that they are functioning properly.

Periodic inspection and testing

90. The inspection and testing of the components of a warning system that are set out in column 2 of Table 17-2 of the Grade Crossings Standards must be conducted at the frequency — as defined in Table 17-1 of those Standards — set out in column 3, 4 or 5 of Table 17-2.

Interconnected traffic control device

91. (1) Before an interconnected traffic control device is placed in service, a road authority must inspect and test its components, including the interconnection between the traffic control device and the warning system, to ensure that the standards set out in articles 18 and 19 of the Grade Crossings Standards are met.

Frequency

(2) The inspection and testing of the components of an interconnected traffic control device that are set out in column 2 of Table 20-1 of the Grade Crossings Standards must be conducted at the frequency — as defined in Table 17-1 of those Standards — set out in column 3 of Table 20-1.

Information

(3) When the road authority inspects, tests or maintains the interconnected traffic control device, the road authority must have, at the site, information respecting the parameters for the control and operation of the device.

OBSTRUCTION OF GRADE CROSSING
Prohibitions

Unnecessary activation of warning system

92. (1) It is prohibited for railway equipment to be left standing in a manner that causes the activation of the warning system at a public grade crossing other than for the purposes of crossing that grade crossing.

Obstruction of public grade crossing

(2) It is prohibited for railway equipment to be left standing on a crossing surface, or for switching operations to be conducted, in a manner that obstructs a public grade crossing — including by the activation of the gate of a warning system — for more than five minutes when vehicular or pedestrian traffic requires passage across it.

Safety Concern

Public grade crossing

93. (1) This section applies to a public grade crossing if

Collaboration

(2) If railway equipment is operated in a manner that regularly causes the obstruction of a public grade crossing, including by the activation of a warning system, and the city, town, municipality or other organized district declares in a resolution that obstruction of the grade crossing creates a safety concern, the railway company and the road authority must collaborate to resolve the safety concern.

Notice

(3) The road authority must notify the Minister and the railway company in writing that the resolution has been passed and must provide them with the information used in support of the resolution, including

Timeline and mediation

(4) The railway company and the road authority must attempt to resolve the safety concern — including through the use of mediation — within 90 days after the day on which the road authority notifies the railway company under subsection (3).

Notice to Minister

(5) The road authority must notify the Minister if the railway company and the road authority are not able to resolve the safety concern within the 90-day period.

Emergency Vehicles

Passage of emergency vehicles

94. Despite sections 92 and 93, if an emergency vehicle requires passage across a grade crossing, a company must take all necessary measures to immediately clear the grade crossing.

STOPPING ON CROSSING SURFACE

Measures

95. A road authority must take measures to ensure that motor vehicles do not stop on the crossing surface of a public grade crossing when there is evidence that queued traffic regularly stops on the crossing surface.

CONSTRUCTION OF INTERSECTION OR ACCESS ROAD

Intersection or access road

96. A person may construct a road intersection or an access road on a road approach to a public grade crossing if

TEMPORARY PROTECTION MEASURES

Threat or interference

97. (1) When a railway company or a road authority undertakes, at a public grade crossing, an activity that could constitute a threat to, or that interferes with, the safety of railway operations, the railway company and the road authority must put in place the necessary protection measures to address the threat or the interference.

Details of activity

(2) Within a reasonable period of time before the activity begins, whichever of the two — the railway company or the road authority — undertakes the activity must provide the other with sufficient details about the activity to determine the necessary protection measures to be put in place.

Failure or malfunction

98. When a railway company or a road authority is advised or becomes aware that a warning system or an interconnected traffic control device at a grade crossing has malfunctioned or failed, or that a condition exists that may cause a malfunction or failure, the railway company or the road authority, as the case may be, must

AUDIBLE WARNINGS

Prescribed requirements

99. For the purposes of section 23.1 of the Railway Safety Act, the following requirements are prescribed for an area:

Public grade crossing — motor vehicles

100. (1) A public grade crossing that is in the area referred to in section 99 that is used by motor vehicles must be equipped with the warning system set out in Table D-1 of the Grade Crossings Standards that corresponds to the number of tracks and the railway design speed set out in that Table, and the warning system must meet the standards set out in articles 12 to 16 of those Standards.

Gate

(2) If a gate is not indicated as being required in Table D-1 of the Grade Crossings Standards, it is nonetheless required if the grade crossing corresponds to the applicable specifications set out in articles 1.1 to 1.3 of Appendix D of those Standards.

Public grade crossing — sidewalk, path or trail

101. (1) A public grade crossing that is in the area referred to in section 99 and that is exclusively for a sidewalk, path or trail must be equipped with the warning system set out in Table D-1 of the Grade Crossings Standards that corresponds to the number of tracks and the railway design speed set out in that Table, and the warning system must meet the standards set out in articles 12 to 16 of those Standards.

Guide fencing

(2) If a warning system without a gate is indicated as being required in Table D-1 of the Grade Crossings Standards, guide fencing as required by article 2.2 of Appendix D of those Standards must be installed.

Guide fencing and barriers

(3) If a warning system is not indicated as being required in Table D-1 of the Grade Crossings Standards, guide fencing as required by article 2.2 of Appendix D of those Standards and a barrier as required by article 2.3 of Appendix D of those Standards must be installed.

Stop and proceed

102. If railway equipment must stop before proceeding across a public grade crossing that is in the area referred to in section 99 and that is used by motor vehicles, the grade crossing must meet the standards set out in article 2.1 of Appendix D of the Grade Crossings Standards.

RECORDS

INFORMATION SHARING

Railway company

103. A railway company must keep the most recent information provided to a road authority under subsection 4(1) and the most recent information received from a road authority under subsection 11(1).

INSPECTION, TESTING AND MAINTENANCE

Content

104. (1) On the day on which a railway company inspects, tests or maintains a warning system, it must record the following information:

Integrity of record

(2) The record must not be altered once it has been created.

Duration

(3) The record must be kept for two years after the day on which it was created. However, if the Grade Crossings Standards specify an interval of two or more years between each inspection, each test or each maintenance activity, the record of the two latest inspections, tests or maintenance activities must be kept.

TEMPORARY PROTECTION MEASURES

Failure or malfunction

105. (1) A railway company must keep a record of a warning system malfunction or failure referred to in section 98, and the record must contain the following information:

Duration

(2) The record must be kept for two years after the day on which the railway company was advised or became aware of the malfunction or failure.

REPEALS

106. The Highway Crossings Protective Devices Regulations (see footnote 3) are repealed.

107. The Railway-Highway Crossing at Grade Regulations (see footnote 4) are repealed.

COMING INTO FORCE

Day of registration

108. These Regulations come into force on the day on which they are registered.

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