New proposed regulations for marine safety violations



    OTTAWA, Nov. 7 /CNW Telbec/ - The Honourable Lawrence Cannon, Minister of
Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, today announced proposed
Administrative Monetary Penalties Regulations to establish a comprehensive and
consistent method outside of the courts, for penalizing marine safety
violations across Canada.
    "The proposed regulations would reinforce the Government of Canada's
commitment to the development of a modern and efficient approach to regulating
the marine sector in Canada," said Minister Cannon. "They would help the
marine community operate in a manner that is safer, more efficient, and
environmentally sound."
    The Administrative Monetary Penalties Regulations are new to the marine
sector. This system would save time and money for everyone. Administrative
monetary penalties would provide a new way to enforce marine safety
requirements without using the criminal court system. In addition, the
regulations include flexible ways to serve Administrative Monetary Penalties
notices to individuals, corporations and vessels. This flexibility and
efficiency would improve the safety of the marine community, the marine
environment and ultimately the general public.
    Additionally, the regulations would promote consistency of enforcement
under the Canada Shipping Act, 2001 (CSA 2001) which came into effect on
July 1, 2007. This new Act replaces the Canada Shipping Act as the principal
legislation governing safety in marine transportation and recreational
boating, as well as protection of the marine environment.
    More than 100 regulations are being reviewed and updated in order to
reflect CSA 2001 changes. The CSA 2001 and its associated regulations apply to
Canadian vessels operating in all waters and to foreign vessels operating in
Canadian waters, ranging from canoes and kayaks to cruise ships and tankers.
    The proposed regulations were published in the Canada Gazette, Part I on
November 3, 2007. A 60-day comment period follows, during which interested
parties may provide their views to the department. After consideration of all
comments received, Transport Canada will finalize the regulations and publish
them in the Canada Gazette, Part II, at which time they will come into force.

    If you would like more information about the CSA 2001, please visit the
Canadian Marine Advisory Council website at www.cmac-ccmc.gc.ca. A
backgrounder providing more detail about the Act and some of its supporting
regulations is also attached.


    
                                 Backgrounder
                                 ------------
                                 ------------

                          CANADA SHIPPING ACT, 2001
                          -------------------------

    The Canada Shipping Act, 2001 (CSA 2001) is an updated and streamlined
version of the Canada Shipping Act, which dates back more than 100 years. The
CSA 2001 came into force on July 1, 2007. It is the principal legislation that
governs the activities of Canadian vessels in all waters, and of all vessels
in Canadian waters.
    The Act applies to a marine transportation industry that is as diverse as
the country it serves - from pleasure craft to fishing vessels, from tugs and
barges to lakers and cruise ships.
    The CSA 2001 is the result of extensive consultations with a wide range of
marine stakeholders. It will help the marine community to operate in a manner
that is safer, more efficient, environmentally sound, and responsive to the
needs of Canadians in a global economy.
    Throughout the reform process, Transport Canada will maintain the highest
possible standards in the important area of marine safety.

    The CSA 2001 Regulatory Reform Project
    --------------------------------------

    In order to give full effect to the CSA 2001, more than 100 regulations
need to be reviewed and updated.

    Changes included in the Canada Shipping Act, 2001

    The Canada Shipping Act reform began in 1997 and evolved on two tracks.

    Track One resulted in Bill C-15, which revised provisions dealing with
ship ownership, registration, and mortgages. It also added a preamble to make
the Act's objectives easy to understand and its content easier to interpret.
Bill C-15 received Royal Assent in June 2001.

    Track Two resulted in Bill C-14, which received Royal Assent on
November 1, 2001 as the Canada Shipping Act, 2001. Now in force, its
provisions better protect and support crews, enhance passenger and vessel
safety, and better protect the marine environment.

    The Act itself has been simplified by:

    - including definitions only when the ordinary dictionary meaning has
      been narrowed or expanded;
    - removing technical details from the Act to simplify the legislative
      framework. They are placed in regulations, standards or other
      documents;
    - using language that is clearer and much easier to understand; and
    - moving all liability provisions to the Marine Liability Act.

    The CSA 2001 authorizes the development of supporting regulations that
clarify and improve existing vessel safety requirements, environmental
protection, and personnel certification and training.

    Key regulations of this regulatory reform include:

    Administrative Monetary Penalties Regulations

    Administrative Monetary Penalties Regulations are being introduced to
provide an alternative to judicial methods of enforcement. While new to the
marine sector, they have been used in the aviation sector for some time.

    Marine Personnel Regulations

    Marine Personnel Regulations ensure that ship owners employ sufficient
crew for the safe operation of vessels. They also ensure that crews are
trained and certified to perform their duties and are able to manage and
operate vessels. Newly added to these regulations are the "Maritime Labour
Standards," which establish the labour working conditions on vessels.

    Environmental Response Regulations

    Environmental Response Regulations deal with the prevention of and
response to marine spills from vessels and oil handling facilities. Response
organizations will need to be certified to enter into agreements with vessels
and oil handling facilities. These facilities will be required to have
prevention and response plans in place.

    Regulations for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships and for Dangerous
    Chemicals

    Regulations for the Prevention of Pollution From Ships and for Dangerous
Chemicals are designed to eliminate the deliberate, negligent, or accidental
discharge of ship-source pollutants into the marine environment. They also
promote the safe operation of chemical tankers.

    Small Vessel Regulations

    Small Vessel Regulations address the safety needs of pleasure craft of all
sizes as well as all other small non-pleasure craft up to 15 gross tonnage
that are not fishing vessels.

    Fishing Vessel Safety Regulations

    New Fishing Vessel Safety Regulations provide an enhanced level of safety.
They require fishing vessels to be built and outfitted for safety, equipped
for emergencies and manned by competent crews.

    You can learn more about the Canada Shipping Act, 2001 reform at the
Canadian Marine Advisory Council website at www.cmac-ccmc.gc.ca.


                                                              November 2007
    




For further information:

For further information: Karine White, Press Secretary, Office of the
Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, Ottawa (613) 991-0700;
Media Relations, Transport Canada, Ottawa, (613) 993-0055; Transport Canada is
online at www.tc.gc.ca. Subscribe to news releases and speeches at
http://www.tc.gc.ca/listserv/ and keep up-to-date on the latest from Transport
Canada; This news release may be made available in alternative formats for
persons with visual disabilities.


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