The Digital Wave: Entering the Dangerous Goods Domain

Public and Government organizations are noticeably switching their hard copy of records to digital copies in the last several years. 

Are you and your company prepared?

Organizations such as accounting firms have large rooms/storage facilities filled with rows upon rows of filing cabinets housing all their files. A lot of these organizations are now thinking smart and thinking for the future. They are substituting these rooms for smaller rooms with servers and data storage devices in them. As a result, these digitized files are far more accessible by more people at any time or anywhere around the world. This has happened before – in the 20th century, many labor-intensive hours were used in an effort to preserve newspapers and old books by transferring them to microfilm.

In an effort to minimize the labor-intensive hours and simplify the process, companies are cutting out the middle man. A perfect example of an industry that has begun this process years ago is the air industry. A customer/client can purchase their plane ticket online and save it on their smart device, avoiding the step of printing the boarding pass. Efforts have been made by IATA to introduce their Travel Pass Initiative, which is a uniform method surrounding any COVID-19 related information such as vaccines, to make this a part of the client travel documents/boarding pass. 

Transport Canada has allowed dangerous goods documentation to be digital but, during actual transportation by the carrier, a hard copy has still been required. During this last year, there has been a pilot project between regulatory and industry to study the efficiency of carriers having digital copies on hand and how it may add to the safety on our roads. 

Overall, it seems the world is moving away from good old paper and moving into complete digital recordings. Our money, our files, our documentation, even our photos are all digital! It is a true rarity to find someone creating a traditional printed photo album anymore! We need to make sure we are ready for this move to the digital world. Companies need to have the necessary infrastructure and have employees trained on how to use the technology necessary to perform well in this new digital world.  

Please see below for additional information on Transport Canada and IATA’s strategies:
Regulatory sandbox on electronic shipping documents
IATA – Travel Pass Initiative

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Elton Woodfine

Elton Woodfine

Elton Woodfine CD (Canadian Decoration) served 22 years as a member of the Canadian Forces. Initially as an Infantry section Commander in the Princess Patricia Canadian Lite Infantry (PPCLI), he served on two peace keeping missions in the former Yugoslavia, and one combat tour in Afghanistan where his unit was awarded the Governor General Unit Citation for actions in combat. He then continued to serve as a member of the Royal Canadian Air Force as a firefighter, where he completed a diploma in Fire Science/ Fire-fighting from Memorial University and Occupational Health and Safety diploma from the University of New Brunswick. Lastly, in his career with the Canadian Forces, he served as a member of the Joint Incident Response Unit (CJIRU) as a Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Operator (CBRN Op), part of the Canadian Special Operation Command (CANSOFCOM). Upon his retirement from the Canadian Forces, he took a position as a Life Cycle Management of hazardous materials instructor for the logistical branch of the Department of National Defense and is knowledgeable in NFCC, CEPA 1999, IMHWR, TDGR, ICAO, IATA, IMDG, GHS and OH&S federal regulations.