Transport Canada to require more data from railways

by Inside Logistics Online Staff

The federal government has published new regulations requiring Canada’s railways to provide additional data about their operations.

Amendments to the Transportation Information Regulations are intended to increase supply chain transparency and create a better understanding of the performance of Canada’s freight rail sector for the benefit of users. Railways will have to comply with the new rules starting on April 4, 2023.

Transport Canada said in a release that the amendments “aim to strengthen the accountability of freight rail service providers”, by requiring major railways to provide more service and performance information. This information will be published weekly on the federal Transportation Data and Information Hub to provide a better picture of end-to-end freight rail performance.

Major railways will also provide Transport Canada with additional data to support targeted public policy and other regulatory purposes, including waybill information (such as origin, destination, weight) and traffic data (such as number of carloads, goods, and car types).

The regulatory changes have been introduced in response to the issues raised in the National Supply Chain Task Force’s Final Report. The report recommended that “all government and private sector stakeholders in the transportation supply chain must redirect their energies to building digital data hubs that will allow for planning, real-time decision-making and an innate understanding of how each part of the chain is operating.”

“Ensuring access to detailed service and performance information for Canada’s railway sector is another way we are contributing to building even more productive exchanges among supply chain members,” said transport minister Omar Alghabra. “This also reflects our commitment to strengthening Canada’s supply chain and improving our economy.”

Service and performance data currently collected came about after the implementation of the Transportation Modernization Act of 2018. They were introduced as temporary requirements for major railways to submit service and performance information. These amendments to the Transportation Information Regulations will replace the temporary transitional provisions under the Transportation Modernization Act, with requirements to submit additional service and performance information.