Railway Prevention of Electric Sparks Regulation: Guidelines for British Columbia’s Heritage Railways
Guidelines Respecting the Prevention of Electric Sparks that May Cause Fire During the Transfer of Flammable Liquids or Compressed Flammable Gases Between Units of Railway Rolling Stock and Stationary Bulk Storage Facilities.
1. These Guidelines may be cited as the Railway Prevention of Electric Sparks Guidelines.
2. In these Guidelines:
“cathodic protection” means a technique to prevent the corrosion of a metal surface by making that
surface the cathode of an electro-chemical cell;
“compressed flammable gas” means any product, material or mixture that
(a) has a critical temperature less than 50°C, an absolute vapour pressure greater than 295 kPa
at 50°C or an absolute pressure in a pressure vessel greater than 275 kPa at 21.1°C or 716
kPa at 54.4°C, and
(b) is flammable when in a mixture of 13 per cent or less by volume with air at normal
atmospheric temperature and pressure or has a flammable range with air wider than 12 per
cent regardless of the lower limit;
“flammable range” means the difference between the minimum and maximum volume percentage
of a product, material or mixture in air that, with air, forms a compressed flammable gas;
“flammable liquid” means any liquid that gives off flammable vapours at or below a temperature of
61°C in a closed cup test;
“railway company” means a railway company that is subject to the jurisdiction of the Canadian
3. Except as permitted in these Guidelines, no railway company shall transfer flammable liquids or
compressed flammable gases between a unit of railway rolling stock and a stationary bulk storage
4. Subject to sections 6 and 7, a Heritage Railway may transfer flammable liquids or compressed
flammable gases between a unit of railway rolling stock and a stationary bulk storage facility if,
before the transfer, the Heritage Railway
(a) establishes, between the section of railway track on which any unit of rolling stock stands
and the piping system that is to be used for the transfer, a permanent electrical connection
that consists of at least two wires, each of which
(i) is made of flexible copper or other corrosion-resistant material, and
(ii) has a resistance of not more than 1.33 ohms/km;
(b) bonds the section of railway track on which any unit of rolling stock stands at each rail joint in
the section and cross-bonds the two rails of the section in at least two places;
(c) grounds the section of railway track that is bonded as required by paragraph (b) with at least
two ground rods that are
(i) at least 2.5 m long,
(ii) at least 15.8 mm in diameter, and
(iii) connected to each other and to the section of railway track with two wires between
each point of connection, each of which has a resistance of not more than 1.33
ohms/km between each place where the section of railway track is grounded;
(d) grounds all non-current carrying components of the piping system that is to be used for the
transfer, including tanks, pumps and stands; and
(e) installs insulated rail joints so as to electrically separate the section of railway track on which
any unit of rolling stock stands from all other railway track.
5. (1) Where the grounding required by section 4 is difficult to implement owing to local conditions,
the railway company shall take such additional measures, including the installation of
insulated joints in the piping system, the provision of additional ground rods or the provision
of additional bonds between the piping system and the units of rolling stock, as may be
required to ground the section of railway track.
(2) Where the tanks of a piping system have cathodic protection, the tanks shall be grounded in
a manner that does not interfere with the cathodic protection.
(3) Insulated rail joints that are installed as required by paragraph 4(e) shall not be bridged by
rolling stock or by any other means during the transfer operations.
6. No transfer of flammable liquids or compressed flammable gases between a unit of rolling stock
and a stationary bulk storage facility that is constructed after the coming into force of these
Guidelines shall be made within 150 m of a power transmission line that has a voltage of 360 kV or
more or within 75 m of a power transmission line that has a voltage of 230 kV to 359 kV.