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Shipping document and marking

In 1998, the National Assembly adopted the Act respecting owners, operators and drivers of heavy vehicles. This Act introduced a new management framework for road transportation of persons and goods in Québec.

The Act provides for a follow-up of the behaviour of owners, operators and drivers of heavy vehicles. That is why the identification of each party during transportation is essential for efficient enforcement of the Act. Therefore must be made available to peace officers to enable them to efficiently identify all parties involved.

Among these tools, the Gouvernement du Québec adopted the Regulation respecting the requirements applicable to shipping documents in 2001. This Regulation arises from the Transport Act, which is under the Ministère's responsibility.

The texts on this page are offered as information. For more details, refer directly to the laws and regulations.

Normative framework

The shipping document is provided for in the Regulation respecting the requirements applicable to shipping documents. It aims to facilitate the identification of an operator during a road check operation by a peace officer.

It is therefore mandatory to keep a shipping document in the heavy vehicle when it is engaged in transportation of goods for remuneration and for the account of others. Moreover, under the Regulation respecting the Act respecting owners, operators and drivers of heavy vehicles, the shipping document is the means preferred by peace officers to identify the operator of the heavy vehicle.

Since July 3, 2015, the shipping document may be replaced by a marking that meets the conditions, affixed to the motorized heavy vehicle. Marking is an optional means of identifying the operator, which relieves him of the obligation to hold a shipping document in the vehicle during transportation.

Target clientele

An operator of heavy vehicles who transports goods for remuneration and for the account of others.

Exemptions are provided for in section 3 of the Regulation respecting the requirements applicable to shipping documents. Thus, it is unnecessary to have a shipping document in the following cases:

  • Bulk transportation of a material defined - in section 1 of the Regulation respecting the brokerage of bulk trucking services;
  • Transportation of goods by bus;
  • Transportation of waste or recyclable materials for a municipality;
  • Marking that meets the conditions.

Concerning transportation of dangerous substances, additional requirements apply to the shipping document. For more information, refer to the section entitled Transportation of Dangerous Substances or to the Transportation of Dangerous Substances Regulation.

General information

A shipping document is mandatory to transport goods for remuneration and for the account of others. However, this shipping document may be replaced by a marking that meets the conditions. An operator who decides no longer to produce and hold shipping documents must ensure he has marking that meets the conditions on his heavy vehicle. The absence of a shipping document and marking that meets the conditions constitutes a violation.

In the context of transportation of goods for remuneration and for the account of others, transportation is the operator's principal activity and is performed for the account of others, for remuneration. A business that incidentally engages in the transportation of goods for delivery of its products to customers is not subject to the Regulation, even if this transportation is performed on payment of shipping charges. Indeed, this is considered to be transportation for one's own account, as is the case for a renovation centre or a furniture store, for example.

Document retention

The shipping document for the goods must be kept in the heavy vehicle used for transportation of these goods, from pickup to delivery.

An operator of heavy vehicles must keep a copy of the shipping documents for two years (for example, at his business).

The mandatory information for a shipping document may be kept in electronic form. However, during a road check operation, they must be reproducible in paper form at the request of a peace officer or inspector.

The shipping document may be composed of several documents, such as a bill of lading, an invoice or a waybill, if they include the minimum contents required by the Regulation.

Minimum required content of the shipping document

A shipping document must contain the following minimum information:

  • the quantity and description of the goods;
  • the name of the shipper and of the receiver (or consignee);
  • the name and identification number of the operator providing the transportation in the Register of Owners and Operators of Heavy Vehicles (NIR) of the Commission des transports du Québec;
  • the date and place where the goods were entrusted to the operator;
  • the operator's destination;
  • the name and identification number of the transport service intermediary, as applicable.

Characteristics of marking

A marking that meets the conditions must have the following characteristics:

  • the name of a single operator;
  • the identification number in the Register of Owners and Operators of Heavy Vehicles (NIR) of the Commission des transports du Québec; related to the name displayed;
  • the register identification number, horizontally aligned and preceded by the inscription "Québec", "Qc", "N.I.R." or "NIR";
  • the marking appearing on both sides of the outside surface of the vehicle's passenger compartment or of the sleeper berth;
  • at least 4 cm in height;
  • a colour contrasting with that of the vehicle.

Legal references

Documentation

Info Camionnage newsletter

Frequently asked questions

Transport ABC is a transportation business on the account of others. It delivers goods on a shipper's account. Should there be a shipping document in the heavy vehicle?

Yes. The driver and the operator must ensure the shipping document meeting the conditions regarding this transportation is kept in the vehicle, from the pickup site of the goods to the destination, because this is transportation for remuneration. However, the shipping document may be replaced by a marking that meets the conditions. In the absence of a shipping document that meets the conditions, the driver is liable to a fine ranging from $125 to $375 and the operator is liable to a fine ranging from $250 to $750.

Transport gravier delivers gravel by dump truck. Should there be a shipping document in the heavy vehicle?

No. Section 3 of the Regulation respecting the requirements applicable to shipping documents provides for an exemption for transportation of bulk materials, as defined by the Regulation respecting the brokerage of bulk trucking services.

Quincaillerie ABC uses its own heavy vehicle to deliver materials purchased in its hardware store by a customer. Should there be a shipping document in the heavy vehicle?

No, because this is transportation for its own account.

Les meubles ABC uses its own vehicle to deliver a refrigerator purchased in its store to a customer. An amount of $50 is applicable for the delivery charge. Should there be a shipping document in the heavy vehicle?

No. This is transportation for its own account. The transportation in question is not the principal activity of Les meubles ABC.

Remorquage ABC tows a car on the account of that car's owner. Should there be a shipping document in the heavy vehicle?

Yes. A marking that meets the conditions on the heavy vehicle may replace the shipping document. In the absence of a shipping document that meets the conditions, the driver is liable to a fine ranging from $125 to $375 and the operator is liable to a fine ranging from $250 to $750.

Why require a shipping document when there are other documents that provide the necessary information?

There is no mandatory model. Indeed, shipping documents may consist of several pieces containing the information required under the Regulation respecting the requirements applicable to shipping documents or be in the form of a slip intended to gather such information. A marking that meets the conditions may validly replace the shipping document.

Transport ABC transports packages for remuneration. It may have up to 50 packages intended for different customers in its truck. Must it produce 50 shipping documents? Would a marking composed of its name and its register identification number be sufficient?

Transport ABC does not have to produce 50 shipping documents. It may produce one or more, provided that it includes the minimum content required by the Regulation respecting the requirements applicable to shipping documents.

An alternative to the shipping document now exists for Transport ABC. The regulations now allow it to replace the shipping documents with a marking that meets the conditions on the heavy vehicles it operates.

Transport ABC has transported for remuneration for over a decade. The company name can be read distinctly on all its vehicles. Can it do without keeping shipping documents in the vehicle?

No. The shipping document can only be replaced by a marking that meets the conditions, which contains not only the name of the business, but also the identification number in the Register of Owners and Operators of Heavy Vehicles (NIR) of the Commission des transports du Québec.

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