Enhancing emergency response with digital.

By Payload • June 18, 2021

“Safety during an incident involving dangerous goods is our utmost priority. That is why we are continuously working to improve safety for Canadians and first responders who play a critical role in an emergency.”

The Honourable Marc Garneau, Former Minister of Transport


Transport Canada Statistics

According to Transport Canada , there were some 108,371 personal injuries resulting from collisions on Canadian roadways, with nearly 2% of those resulting in fatalities in 2018.  Transport Canada also captured more than 1900 reported emergencies involving Dangerous Goods.  Of those 1900 Dangerous Goods emergencies reported in 2018, 600 (or 31.5%) involved Class 3 goods, or flammable liquids.


Consider This…

When an emergency occurs, every second matters.  In the time it takes to blink, emergency responders must determine not only the fastest way to save lives and mitigate further risks at a scene, but they must do this in such a way that considers their own safety, and the safety of others involved.  In the case of incidents involving vehicles transporting dangerous goods, the stakes are even higher.  Emergency responders face daily situations that require critical thinking, quickly identifying threats and risks, and identifying which lifesaving technique or tool to deploy.

When arriving to a scene where Dangerous Goods are involved, emergency responders must also quickly recognize and/or determine what the dangerous good is.


What’s in the Truck?

As mandated by Transport Canada, when it comes to determining if a substance is a Dangerous Good or not, it is the responsibility of the consignor to properly classify the substance and/or product being transported and to determine whether or not it qualifies as “dangerous”.

Once tested against all criteria of the nine classes, TDG Regulation prescribes the following three scenarios for determining if a substance is a Dangerous Good:

  1. The dangerous good is a known substance and the shipping name can be found in Column 2 of Schedule 1, which lists dangerous goods by their UN number.
  2. The substance meets the criteria of only one class and packaging group. When a substance—more specifically “a mixture”—meets criteria for only one class and packaging group, a generic shopping name is to be used to properly identify the product.
  3. The substance meets the criteria of more than one class or more than one packing group. When a product is not a pure substance and meets criteria for more than one class or packaging group, the classification should then be determined by using Section 2.5 of the TDG Regulations


What Does This Have to do with Digital, and how does PAYLOAD fit in?

Great question.  We’ll address this in two parts.

  1. As the landscape and requirements for managing the transportation sector continue to change, Transport Canada is investigating new ways of being able to access and manage information; more specifically, digital solutions. At present, Transport Canada is testing a sandbox project, wherein shipping documentation can be accessed electronically.  The goal of this initiative is to assist Transport Canada in achieving a higher level of safety than can be currently found by relying solely on paper. When explaining why the need for testing electronic shipping documents exists, Transport Canada noted that electronic documents are: easier to read, simpler to update, quicker to share, can integrate with other digital business processes, and more.
  2. PAYLOAD’s eManifest and TDG Mobile applications allow users to create and distribute documents in a process that is completely digital. Furthermore, drivers can view and display documents on demand, off-line or on-line for the duration of their trip.  PAYLOAD’s team has worked diligently to create a product that satisfies the requirements of the Transport Canada Paperless TDG Sandbox.

Wait… Weren’t we Talking About Emergency Responders?

A “Cochrane Today” article published in April of this year states:

“The response times released by Alberta Health Services range between just under 10 minutes to around 20 minutes.”

This same article goes on to quote Alberta Health Services:

“EMS monitors ambulance availability in real-time and ensures resources are always available to respond to emergencies.”


Right, so… PAYLOAD?

Seeing the benefit of accessing digital Dangerous Goods documents, PAYLOAD developed a paperless TDG solution, wherein we offer a portal dedicated specifically to first responders.  Once logged in, first responders will have access to relevant information that may not be physically available in the case of an emergency where vehicles are inaccessible, or paper is misplaced or damaged.

Once signed in, first responders will be able to search our database by criteria such as waybill number, truck/trailer number, generator, transporter, or the status of the document (if known).  Upon accessing the desired Dangerous Goods documentation, responders will be better equipped to do their jobs of savings lives and keeping our roads safe.


For more information on how our team can help your organization by going digital, contact our team at for a demo, today.

PAYLOAD is a brand built on innovation and creating value. Let us show you how we can save you time and money!