2015-16 Report on Plans and Priorities

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The original version was signed by
Kathleen Fox
Chair
Transportation Safety Board of Canada

The original version was signed by
Peter Van Loan
Leader of the Government in the House of Commons
House of Commons

© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, represented by the Chair of the Transportation Safety Board of Canada, 2015

Catalogue No. TU1-10/2015E-PDF
ISSN 2292-5848

This document is available in alternative formats upon request.

Chair’s message

Over the past 25 years, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) has investigated thousands of transportation occurrences. No matter where things go wrong—on our waterways, along our pipelines or railways, or in our skies—we make sure Canadians know what happened and why. But our work doesn't stop there. Our mandate is to advance transportation safety, not just report on what went wrong, and that means we are also committed to making sure that our voice is heard and acted upon by regulators and the industry.

To accomplish all of this, we need to be both strategic and flexible; making the most of the resources we have—be they human, financial or material. And so each year we develop a plan, identifying what we want to accomplish and how we'll go about doing it.

This year, our goals include continuing to improve the quality and the timeliness of our investigation reports. With respect to our information management, we will identify records of business value and make decisions about retention and disposal schedules. We will work with the regulator and key stakeholders to remove the barriers to the use of on-board recorders within the framework of company safety management systems. We also plan to continue highlighting the eight issues identified on our 2014 safety Watchlist, and we will launch a new safety issues investigation to more closely examine the risks that persist in air taxi operations across Canada. In addition, we will carry out a survey to obtain feedback from our stakeholders which will help us better focus our products and efforts. We will follow up on our employees' feedback collected through the 2014 Public Service Employee Survey. Finally, we will spend part of the year developing a new strategic plan that will define the TSB priorities for the next five years.

Those are big challenges, but we have a strong track record at effecting change. We also have a dedicated team of experts who know what it takes and are willing to go the extra mile. In fact, that's the secret ingredient to our success: a passion for safety and a commitment to doing the right thing—one shared by the 200-plus TSB employees from coast to coast. For 25 years, they've worked hard to advance transportation safety, and Canadians can rest assured that we'll work just as hard for the next 25.

Section I: Organizational expenditure overview

Organizational profile

Minister: Peter Van Loan

Deputy Head: Kathleen Fox

Ministerial portfolio: Privy Council

Year established: 1990

Main legislative authorities:
Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act,Footnote i S.C. 1989, c. 3

Organizational context

Raison d'être

The Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board is referred to as the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) in its day-to-day activities. The TSB is an independent agency created in 1990 by an Act of Parliament. It operates at arm's length from other government departments and agencies to ensure that there are no real or perceived conflicts of interest. TSB's sole objective is to advance air, marine, rail and pipeline transportation safety. This mandate is fulfilled by conducting independent investigations into selected transportation occurrences to identify the causes and contributing factors, and the safety deficiencies evidenced by these occurrences. The TSB makes recommendations to reduce or eliminate any such safety deficiencies and reports publicly on its investigations. The TSB then follows up with stakeholders to ensure that safety actions are taken to reduce risks and improve safety.

The TSB may also represent Canadian interests in foreign investigations of transportation accidents involving Canadian registered, licensed or manufactured aircraft, ships or railway rolling stock. In addition, the TSB carries out some of Canada's obligations related to transportation safety at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

The Leader of the Government in the House of Commons is the designated minister for the purposes of tabling the TSB's administrative reports in Parliament, such as the Report on Plans and Priorities and Departmental Performance Report. The TSB forms part of the Privy Council portfolio of departments and agencies.

Responsibilities

The TSB exists as an independent investigation body with the sole goal of advancing transportation safety. Since its inception in 1990, the TSB has conducted thousands of investigations across the modes for which it is responsible.

The TSB is one of many Canadian and foreign organizations involved in improving transportation safety nationally and internationally. Because it has no formal authority to regulate, direct or enforce specific actions, the TSB can only succeed in fulfilling its strategic outcome through the actions of others. Operating at arm's length from other federal departments involved in the transportation field, the Board must present its findings and recommendations in such a manner that compels others to act. This implies ongoing dialogue, information sharing and strategic coordination with organizations such as Transport Canada, the National Energy Board and the Canadian Coast Guard. The TSB must also engage industry and foreign regulatory organizations in a similar fashion. Through various means, the TSB must present compelling arguments that will convince these “agents of change” to take action in response to identified safety deficiencies.

As one of the world leaders in its field, the TSB regularly shares its investigation techniques, methodologies and tools with foreign safety organizations by inviting them to participate in in-house training programs in the areas of investigation methodology and human and organizational factors. Under the terms of international agreements, the TSB also provides investigation assistance to foreign safety organizations, such as decoding and analyzing flight recorder data or overseeing engine tear-downs. The TSB also shares data and reports with sister organizations, in addition to participating in international working groups and studies to advance transportation safety.

For more details on the TSB investigation process or the links between the TSB and other federal organizations visit the TSB website.Footnote ii

Strategic outcome and program alignment architecture

The structure below illustrates the program activities framework that contributes to the achievement of the TSB strategic outcome. During 2014-15, the TSB completed a review of its performance measurement framework.  The titles and descriptions of its programs have consequently been updated for 2015-16.

  • 1 Strategic Outcome: Independent investigations into transportation occurrences contribute to making the transportation system safer
    • 1.1 Program: Aviation Occurrence Investigations
    • 1.2 Program: Marine Occurrence Investigations
    • 1.3 Program: Rail Occurrence Investigations
    • 1.4 Program: Pipeline Occurrence Investigations
  • Internal Services

Organizational priorities

The TSB Strategic PlanFootnote iii outlines the strategic objectives and associated priorities that have been identified by senior management for the period of 2011-12 to 2015-16 in order to achieve its strategic outcome. This plan provides the framework that guides the identification of key activities and the TSB's investment decision-making for the current exercise. During 2015-16, the TSB will undertake a comprehensive analysis to prepare its next five year Strategic Plan for the period of 2016-17 to 2020-21.

Priority: Responding - Strengthened organizational readines
TypeFootnote 1 Ongoing
Programs
  • Air Occurrence Investigations
  • Marine Occurrence Investigations
  • Rail Occurrence Investigations
  • Pipeline Occurrence Investigations
Description The success of the TSB and its credibility depends largely on the expertise, professionalism and competence of its employees. The TSB will continue to focus on strategic human resources management by investing in the training and development of its employees. In 2015-16, continued focus will be placed on improving the quality and timeliness of investigation reports, as well as continuing the review and update of the accident investigator training program and the TSB's Manual of Investigations.  The TSB will also review the employee feedback from the 2014 Public Service Employee Survey and develop a follow-up action plan.
Priority: Managing - Improved information and data management
TypeFootnote 1 Ongoing
Programs
  • Air Occurrence Investigations
  • Marine Occurrence Investigations
  • Rail Occurrence Investigations
  • Pipeline Occurrence Investigations
Description

The TSB's work is fundamentally reliant on the collection, retention, management and analysis of occurrence information. The TSB will continue to enhance its information management processes and tools by:

  • Completing the identification of investigation records that have enduring business value versus transitory value, and implementing revised retention periods and required disposal dates;
  • Developing and implementing a multi-modal safety communications tracking tool to improve the tracking and monitoring of safety issues identified by the TSB;
  • Continuing to improve its information and data management practices and tools;
  • Providing expanded on-line public access to occurrence data.
Priority: Advocating - Increased effectiveness of TSB products and services
TypeFootnote 1 Ongoing
Programs
  • Air Occurrence Investigations
  • Marine Occurrence Investigations
  • Rail Occurrence Investigations
  • Pipeline Occurrence Investigations
Description The TSB has no authority to regulate, direct or enforce specific actions; therefore it can only succeed in fulfilling its strategic outcome through the actions of others. Through various means, the TSB must present compelling arguments that will convince stakeholders to take action in response to identified safety deficiencies. The TSB will endeavor to increase the uptake of recommendations and other safety communications by stakeholders by increasing awareness of the issues through continuously improved communication products and broader outreach activities. In 2015-16, the TSB will review and update its outreach activities and will conduct a stakeholders' survey to seek feedback on its products and services. The TSB will also work with the regulator and key stakeholders to remove the barriers to the use of on-board recorders for proactive safety purposes within the framework of company safety management systems.

Footnotes

Footnote 1

Type is defined as follows: ongoing: committed to at least three fiscal years prior to the subject year of the Report on Plans and Priorities.

Return to footnote 1 referrer

Risk analysis

The TSB operates within the context of a very large and complex Canadian and international transportation system. The TSB's volume of activities is influenced by the number, severity and complexity of transportation occurrences, and the volume cannot effectively be predicted. This uncertainty poses certain challenges with respect to the planning and management of TSB resources. The TSB must be ready to respond to occurrences. Inadequate human resources or inexperienced personnel could impact the department's ability to meet urgent operational requirements and public expectations.  Furthermore, a significant transportation accident or flurry of smaller size occurrences could significantly increase expenditures and result in resource pressures beyond the TSB's available funding.  Furthermore, the TSB's work is fundamentally reliant on the collection, retention, management and analysis of occurrence information. Ineffective safeguarding, retention and retrieval of information therefore can pose a risk to the achievement of the TSB mandate.

The following tables summarize the TSB's most significant risks for 2015-16 and the related mitigation strategies.

Key risks
Recruitment, development and maintenance of a knowledge workforce
Risk Risk response strategy Link to program alignment architecture
The success of the TSB and its credibility depend largely on the expertise, professionalism and competence of its employees. Certain key positions at the TSB are “one deep” which means that there is only one person responsible for a specific task, with limited back-up. In addition, some of these key positions also require strong managerial and technical skills. Given the on-going attrition due to employee retirements, the loss of expertise and knowledge may pose a significant risk to the TSB's success. There is medium likelihood that an inadequate human resources capacity will result in a moderate impact with respect to TSB meeting public expectations for responsiveness. The TSB is increasing its efforts to maintain its knowledge base and technical expertise through effective recruitment, training and development in order to mitigate this risk.

The TSB Executive Committee monitors staffing, turnover, training and other relevant human resources statistics to monitor for possible workforce issues and implement corrective action as required.

  • Air Occurrence Investigations
  • Marine Occurrence Investigations
  • Rail Occurrence Investigations
  • Pipeline Occurrence Investigations
Limited financial resources
Risk Risk response strategy Link to program alignment architecture
The TSB's expenditures are largely influenced by the number and complexity of transportation occurrences. A significant transportation accident or flurry of smaller size occurrences could significantly increase expenditures and result in resource pressures beyond the Board's available funding. Another risk to TSB's financial resources is the progressive reductions in funding announced as a result of government-wide fiscal restraint measures, which reduce the flexibility in the TSB's budget. There is a risk that further budget reductions and/or significant increases in operating costs will impact the delivery of TSB's mandate. There is a medium likelihood that the TSB would have to revise its investigation operations model and this could have a moderate impact on the delivery of its products. The TSB Executive Committee will continue to monitor spending on a monthly basis and review budget allocations on a quarterly basis. The TSB will continue to look for opportunities where spending can be minimized in order to provide financial flexibility to respond to priorities that may occur in the year.

The TSB has provisions in place to seek incremental funding from Parliament for major occurrence investigations.

  • Air Occurrence Investigations
  • Marine Occurrence Investigations
  • Rail Occurrence Investigations
  • Pipeline Occurrence Investigations
Safeguarding, retention and retrieval of information
Risk Risk response strategy Link to program alignment architecture
Ineffective safeguarding, retention and retrieval of information pose a risk to the achievement of the TSB mandate. The TSB's work is fundamentally reliant on the collection, retention, management and analysis of occurrence information. The TSB must therefore ensure that information is current, appropriately stored and readily accessible to employees. There is a medium likelihood that gaps in the safeguarding, retention and retrieval of information could have a moderate negative impact on the TSB's ability to deliver its mandate in a timely and effective manner. The TSB will continue to enhance the processes, tools and technology in support of the management of its information resources to mitigate the risk of losing critical information and corporate knowledge. In particular the TSB will increase its monitoring of information management practices with respect to the classification, storage and retention of occurrence information with the objective of ensuring a consistent application. The TSB will also investigate options for improving the tools for storing information in the Investigation Management System to ensure compliance with information management policy requirements.
  • Air Occurrence Investigations
  • Marine Occurrence Investigations
  • Rail Occurrence Investigations
  • Pipeline Occurrence Investigations

Planned expenditures

Budgetary financial resources (dollars)
2015-16
Main estimates
2015-16
Planned spending
2016-17
Planned spending
2017-18
Planned spending
29,729,799 30,328,212 30,005,172 30,005,172
Human resources (Full-time equivalents — FTEs)
2015–16 2016–17 2017–18
220 220 220
Budgetary planning summary for strategic outcome and programs (dollars)
Strategic outcome, Programs and Internal services 2012–13
Expenditures
2013–14
Expenditures
2014–15
Forecast
spending
2015–16
Main estimates
2015-16
Planned spending
2016–17
Planned spending
2017–18
Planned spending
Strategic outcome: Independent investigations into transportation occurrences contribute to making the transportation system safer
Air occurrence investigations 13,670,313 14,671,477 14,230,339 12,537,059 12,789,410 12,653,184 12,653,184
Marine occurrence investigations 5,831,259 5,457,349 5,306,194 4,902,097 5,000,768 4,947,503 4,947,503
Rail occurrence investigations 4,703,146 6,883,816 5,594,757 5,332,576 5,439,912 5,381,969 5,381,969
Pipeline occurrence investigations 457,077 353,442 605,693 600,535 612,623 606,097 606,097
Subtotal 24,661,795 27,366,084 25,736,983 23,372,267 23,842,713 23,588,753 23,588,753
Internal services subtotal 6,994,482 5,937,110 6,757,903 6,357,532 6,485,499 6,416,419 6,416,419
Total 31,656,277 33,303,194 32,494,886 29,729,799 30,328,212 30,005,172 30,005,172

The 2012-13 and 2013-14 expenditures presented above are actual results as presented in the Public Accounts of Canada. Spending in 2013-14 was higher than normal mainly as a result of additional expenditures of $1.1 million for the investigation of the Lac-Mégantic rail accident that occurred in July 2013.

The TSB is financed by the Government of Canada through Parliamentary authorities. Canada's Economic Action Plan 2012 (Budget 2012) called upon the TSB to reduce its operating expenditures by $1.3 million by 2014–15. Gradual reductions began in 2012-13 with the total permanent reduction of $1.3 million reflected in the 2014-15 and future years' figures. Other permanent reductions beginning in 2014-15 include government-wide initiatives for the Canada School of Public Service renewal and the Service Canada web renewal. Government-wide operating budget freezes also apply for fiscal years 2014-15 and 2015-16 whereby the TSB will need to absorb any economic salary increases during those years.

Forecast spending in 2014-15 is lower than spending in 2013-14, primarily as a result of the funding received for Lac-Mégantic in 2013-14.  Departmental planned spending for 2015-16 onward consists of funding anticipated to be received through Main Estimates plus an estimated amount for compensation adjustments for terminable allowances. Fiscal year 2015-16 also includes an estimate of carry forward of unused funds from 2014-15 of $0.3 million. The spending pattern over the planning years is anticipated to remain consistent with expenditures prior to 2013-14. However, a significant transportation accident, a flurry of smaller size occurrences, or further budget reductions could significantly change planned spending.

During 2014-15, the TSB completed a review of its performance measurement framework.  As part of this review, the allocation of funding for specialized activities in support of all four programs (e.g. engineering and technical, human factors) has been modified to better align with the proportion of active investigations in each mode at the time of preparation of the Main Estimates.  The new allocation process explains the relative differences in funding by program starting in 2015-16.

Alignment of spending with whole-of-government framework

Alignment 2015-16 Planned spending by whole-of-government-framework (dollars)Footnote iv
Strategic outcome Program Spending area Government of Canada outcome 2015-16 planned spending
Independent investigations into transportation occurrences contribute to making the transportation system safer 1.1
Aviation occurrence investigations
Social affairs A safe and secure Canada 12,789,410
  1.2
Marine occurrence investigations
Social affairs A safe and secure Canada 5,000,768
  1.3
Rail occurrence investigations
Social affairs A safe and secure Canada 5,439,912
  1.4
Pipeline occurrence investigations
Social affairs A safe and secure Canada 612,623
Total planned spending by spending area (dollars)
Spending area Total planned spending
Social affairs 23,842,713

Departmental spending trend

Departmental spending trend graphFootnote 1

Footnotes

Footnote 1

Costs of services received without charge are not included in the total spending.

Return to footnote 1 referrer

Estimates by vote

For information on TSB appropriations, please see the 2015-16 Main Estimates publication.Footnote v

Section II: Analysis of programs by strategic outcome

Strategic Outcome: Independent investigations into transportation occurrences contribute to making the transportation system safer

Programs

As shown in the 2015-16 Main Estimates, the TSB has the following four key programs:

  • Aviation Occurrence Investigations
  • Marine Occurrence Investigations
  • Rail Occurrence Investigations
  • Pipeline Occurrence Investigations

Program 1.1 Aviation occurrence investigations

Description

The Aviation Occurrence Investigations program is governed by the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act, the Transportation Safety Board Regulations, and Annex 13 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation. Under this program, the TSB conducts independent investigations into selected aviation transportation occurrences in, or over Canada, and in certain circumstances internationally, to identify causes and contributing factors. This program includes the publication of investigation reports, the formulation and monitoring of recommendations and other safety communications, as well as the conduct of outreach activities to advocate for changes to operating practices, equipment, infrastructure, and legislation to advance transportation safety. The Aviation Occurrence Investigations program also includes the fulfillment of specific Government of Canada obligations related to transportation safety under conventions of the International Civil Aviation Organization and other international agreements.

Budgetary financial resources (dollars)
2015-16
Main estimates
2015-16
Planned spending
2016-17
Planned spending
2017-18
Planned spending
12,537,059 12,789,410 12,653,184 12,653,184
Human resources (FTEs)
2015–16 2016–17 2017-18
89 89 89
Performance measurement
Program expected results Performance indicators Targets Date to be achieved
Aviation occurrence investigations are efficient Average time for completing investigation reports 450 days March 31, 2017
  Percentage of investigations completed within the published target time 75% March 31, 2016
Safety deficiencies in the aviation industry are addressed Percentage of responses to recommendations assessed as Fully Satisfactory (since TSB's creation) 64% March 31, 2016
  Percentage of safety advisories on which safety actions have been taken 60% March 31, 2016
  Average time recommendations have been outstanding (active and dormant recommendations) 7 years March 31, 2016
Aviation transportation system is safer Aviation accident rate (over 10-year period) Continue downward trend in accident rate Footnote *
  Number of fatal aviation accidents (over 10-year period) Reduction in number of fatalities Footnote *

Footnotes

Footnote *

Specific targets cannot be set at this time due to the recent change in TSB Regulations which will impact the number of occurrences reported to TSB.

Return to footnote * referrer

Planning highlights

In 2015-16, the TSB will continue to face significant challenges in achieving performance targets for the Air Occurrence Investigations program. However, the established performance targets will remain unchanged. There are numerous outstanding safety issues that must be resolved in order to improve aviation safety for Canadians. It is therefore important for the TSB to maintain its targets and to work harder to achieve the desired results.

The TSB continues to face challenges in achieving its performance targets for the timely completion of investigation reports in the Air Occurrence Investigations program. Over the past year a detailed review of the investigation process was completed and a work plan has been developed to improve the efficiency and timeliness of the process. A number of changes will be introduced during 2015-16 which should lead to an improvement in future performance results. Investments in employee training will continue to be made. Enhanced measures for the tracking and management of the investigation workload will also continue to be applied. Some progress towards the achievement of the report timeliness targets is therefore expected in 2015-16 while the various changes are implemented but it is unlikely that the TSB will fully achieve these targets before March 31, 2017.

Little progress has been made on the achievement of the Percentage of responses to recommendations assessed as fully satisfactory. Progress is very slow due to the systemic nature and complexity of some of the issues to be addressed, the complexity of the regulatory process, the need to harmonize standards with other countries, as well as the lack of buy-in from the regulators and industry stakeholders. The Air Investigation Branch has recently renewed its efforts and is committed to working with Transport Canada to triage all the outstanding recommendations and examine potential solutions to address the underlying safety deficiencies. The TSB will also renew and sustain its outreach efforts in 2015-16 to try and convince industry stakeholders to take appropriate safety actions to mitigate these outstanding safety risks. Furthermore, the TSB will launch an in-depth Safety Issues Investigation into the risks that persist in air taxi operations across Canada.

Almost 50% of the Air Occurrence Investigations workforce will be eligible for retirement within the next five years. For the next few years, a particular focus will therefore be placed on succession planning, proactive staffing, investments in training, and knowledge transfer to ensure that the TSB maintains an adequate capacity to deliver on its mandate with respect to aviation safety.

Program 1.2 Marine occurrence investigations

Description

The Marine Occurrence Investigations program is governed by the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act, the Transportation Safety Board Regulations, and the Casualty Investigation Code of the International Maritime Organization. Under this program, the TSB conducts independent investigations into selected marine transportation occurrences in Canada, and in certain circumstances internationally to identify causes and contributing factors. This program includes the publication of investigation reports, the formulation and monitoring of recommendations and other safety communications, as well as the conduct of outreach activities to advocate for changes to operating practices, equipment, infrastructure, and legislation to advance transportation safety. The Marine Occurrence Investigations program also includes the fulfillment of specific Government of Canada's obligations related to transportation safety under conventions of the International Maritime Organization and other international agreements.

Budgetary financial resources (dollars)
2015-16
Main estimates
2015-16
Planned spending
2016-17
Planned spending
2017-18
Planned spending
4,902,097 5,000,768 4,947,503 4,947,503
Human resources (FTEs)
2015–16 2016–17 2017–18
37 37 37
Performance measurement
Program
expected results
Performance indicators Targets Date to be achieved
Marine occurrence investigations are efficient Average time for completing investigation reports 450 days March 31, 2016
  Percentage of investigations completed within the published target time 75% March 31, 2016
Safety deficiencies in the marine industry are addressed Percentage of responses to recommendations assessed as Fully Satisfactory (since TSB's creation) 85% March 31, 2016
  Percentage of safety advisories on which safety actions have been taken 60% March 31, 2016
  Average time recommendations have been outstanding (active and dormant recommendations) 7 years March 31, 2016
Marine transportation system is safer Marine accident rate (over 10-year period) Reduction in accident rate Footnote *
  Number of fatal marine accidents (over 10-year period) Reduction in number of fatalities Footnote *

Footnotes

Footnote *

Specific targets cannot be set at this time due to the recent change in TSB Regulations which will impact the number of occurrences reported to TSB.

Return to footnote * referrer

Planning highlights

For 2015-16, the Marine Investigation Branch continues to be well-positioned to achieve the expected results and agreed upon targets mainly due to the branch reorganization, the highly skilled workforce, newly implemented database, and effective project management and quality control measures. Nevertheless, the Marine Investigation Branch is a small team – this makes it challenging to maintain a consistent level of performance whenever there are unplanned staff departures. Recent difficulties in staffing two vacant positions could impact the performance of the Marine Occurrence Investigations program if solutions are not identified to fill these positions in a timely manner.

Last year, the target for the percentage of responses to recommendations assessed as fully satisfactory was increased to 85% in anticipation that Transport Canada's new Fishing Vessel Safety Regulations would address a number of outstanding TSB recommendations. However, these regulations have again been delayed and it is unclear when they may be finalized. For 2015-16, the target will remain the same and the TSB will renew its efforts to try to convince Transport Canada to move faster on this key file.  The target for the Percentage of safety advisories on which safety actions have been taken has been reduced from 70% to 60% based upon the results achieved in the past two years. This adjustment was made to reflect a more realistic objective than what was originally estimated by management at a point in time when no historical data was available. All other targets will remain the same as in 2014-15.

Program 1.3 Rail occurrence investigations

Description

The Rail Occurrence Investigations program is governed by the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act and the Transportation Safety Board Regulations. Under this program, the TSB conducts independent investigations into selected rail transportation occurrences in Canada to identify causes and contributing factors. This program includes the publication of investigation reports, the formulation and monitoring of recommendations and other safety communications, as well as the conduct of outreach activities to advocate for changes to operating practices, equipment, infrastructure, and legislation to advance transportation safety. The Rail Occurrence Investigations program also includes the provision of assistance, upon request, to the provinces for the investigation of short-line railway occurrences under provincial jurisdiction.

Budgetary financial resources (dollars)
2015-16
Main estimates
2015-16
Planned spending
2016-17
Planned spending
2017-18
Planned spending
5,332,576 5,439,912 5,381,969 5,381,969
Human resources (FTEs)
2015–16 2016–17 2017–18
39 39 39
Performance measurement
Program
expected results
Performance indicators Targets Date to be achieved
Rail occurrence investigations are efficient Average time for completing investigation reports 450 days March 31, 2016
  Percentage of investigations completed within the published target time 75% March 31, 2016
Safety deficiencies in the rail industry are addressed Percentage of responses to recommendations assessed as Fully Satisfactory (since TSB's creation) 89% March 31, 2016
  Percentage of safety advisories on which safety actions have been taken 75% March 31, 2016
  Average time recommendations have been outstanding (active and dormant recommendations) 7 years March 31, 2016
Rail transportation system is safer Rail accident rate (over 10-year period) Continue downward trend in accident rate Footnote *
  Number of fatal rail  accidents (over 10-year period) Reduction in number of fatalities Footnote *

Footnotes

Footnote *

Specific targets cannot be set at this time due to the recent change in TSB Regulations which will impact the number of occurrences reported to TSB.

Return to footnote * referrer

Planning highlights

Continued focus will be required to achieve the performance targets set for the Rail Occurrence Investigations program. With completion of the Lac-Mégantic investigation, the TSB faces an important challenge due to the heavy workload associated with a larger than usual number of active investigations, as well as the need to catch up on other investigations that were delayed given the high priority placed on the Lac-Mégantic investigation over the past year. The Rail Investigation Branch will continue to manage its investigation process rigorously through effective coordination within the investigation teams, early development of the sequence of events and early identification of safety deficiencies.

Despite positive responses from the regulator and the railway industry and the high level of safety actions taken following TSB safety communications over the past year, significant rail safety issues remain unresolved. The TSB must therefore continue to make compelling arguments that will influence the regulator and industry to take additional safety actions. In 2015-16, TSB will work on a priority basis with industry to remove the barriers to the use of on-board recorders for proactive safety purposes within the framework of company safety management systems. Another challenge for 2015-16 is the recruitment and training of new investigators. With a significant number of rail personnel who are eligible to retire within 24 months, effective succession planning and proactive staffing will remain a priority for the coming year. Priority will also continue to be placed on staff training and the transfer of knowledge to new staff.

Program 1.4 Pipeline occurrence investigations

Description

The Pipeline Occurrence Investigations program is governed by the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act and the Transportation Safety Board Regulations. Under this program, the TSB conducts independent investigations into selected pipeline occurrences under federal jurisdiction within Canada to identify causes and contributing factors. This program includes the publication of investigation reports, the formulation and monitoring of recommendations and other safety communications, as well as the conduct of outreach activities to advocate for changes to operating practices, equipment, infrastructure, and legislation to advance transportation safety.

Budgetary financial resources (dollars)
2015-16
Main estimates
2015-16
Planned spending
2016-17
Planned spending
2017-18
Planned spending
600,535 612,623 606,097 606,097
Human resources (FTEs)
2015–16 2016–17 2017–18
4 4 4
Performance measurement
Program
expected results
Performance indicators Targets Date to be achieved
Pipeline occurrence investigations are efficient Average time for completing investigation reports 450 days March 31, 2016
  Percentage of investigations completed within the published target time 75% March 31, 2016
Safety deficiencies in the pipeline industry are addressed Percentage of responses to recommendations assessed as Fully Satisfactory (since TSB's creation) 100% March 31, 2016
  Percentage of safety advisories on which safety actions have been taken 75% March 31, 2016
  Average time recommendations have been outstanding (active and dormant recommendations) 7 years March 31, 2016
Pipeline system is safer Pipeline  accident rate (over 10-year period) Reduction in accident rate Footnote *
  Number of fatal pipeline  accidents (over 10-year period) No fatalities Footnote *

Footnotes

Footnote *

Specific targets cannot be set at this time due to the recent change in TSB Regulations which will impact the number of occurrences reported to TSB.

Return to footnote * referrer

Planning highlights

During the past 18 months pipeline investigators were assigned to provide assistance on the Lac-Mégantic rail investigation. This has resulted in some significant delays for the active pipeline occurrence investigations which must now be addressed. It is expected that the two open investigations will be completed; however, the timeliness target will not be met for this year.

Other challenges for 2015-16 include the recruitment of new investigators to replace personnel who have retired and ensuring an adequate response capacity to deal with significant occurrences. In addition, the TSB will review and adjust, where necessary, its investigation processes to ensure that pipeline occurrence investigations are conducted in a modern and efficient manner.

At this time, there are no outstanding pipeline recommendations, as all have been assessed as fully satisfactory. However, various outreach activities will be identified and implemented to ensure a high level of pipeline safety awareness.

Internal services

Description

Internal Services are groups of related activities and resources that are administered to support the needs of programs and other corporate obligations of an organization. These groups are: Management and Oversight Services; Communications Services; Legal Services; Human Resources Management Services; Financial Management Services; Information Management Services; Information Technology Services; Real Property Services; Materiel Services; Acquisition Services; and Other Administrative Services. Internal Services include only those activities and resources that apply across an organization and not to those provided specifically to a program.

Budgetary financial resources (dollars)
2015-16
Main estimates
2015-16
Planned spending
2016-17
Planned spending
2017-18
Planned spending
6,357,532 6,485,499 6,416,419 6,416,419
Human resources (FTEs)
2014–15 2015–16 2016–17
51 51 51

Planning highlights

In 2015-16, the Internal services program will continue to implement ways to more effectively deliver programs and services in support of the four investigation programs. Its first priority will be to continue to improve the tools and guidance with respect to information management. This will involve leading internal working groups with investigators from the four programs to develop recommendations on which investigation records have enduring business value, as well as their related retention and disposal schedules, for senior management approval.

Other Internal services priorities for 2015-16 include:

  • Supporting the recruitment and development of investigators as the TSB continues to face a period of high turnover due to employee retirements;
  • Coordinating the development and implementation of an action plan in response to employee feedback from the 2014 Public Service Employee Survey;
  • Continuing to build on the performance management framework to ensure strong linkages exist between organizational performance and individual employee performance objectives/evaluations;
  • Monitoring government-wide initiatives relating to internal services and systems, and implementing changes in accordance with prescribed schedules;
  • Developing and implementing a risk-based internal audit plan over the next three fiscal years; and
  • Reviewing options to expedite the processing of requests under the Access to Information Act in the face of significant increases in the volume of requests, and the volume and complexity of the information covered by the requests. The TSB has temporarily increased the resources dedicated to processing requests in order to assist in this priority area.

Section III: Supplementary information

Future-oriented statement of operations

The future-oriented condensed statement of operations provides a general overview of the Transportation Safety Board's operations. The forecasted financial information on expenses and revenues is prepared on an accrual accounting basis to strengthen accountability and to improve transparency and financial management.

Because the future-oriented condensed statement of operations is prepared on an accrual accounting basis, and the forecast and planned spending amounts presented in other sections of the Report on Plans and Priorities are prepared on an expenditure basis, amounts will differ.

A more detailed future-oriented statement of operations and associated notes, including a reconciliation of the net costs of operations to the requested authorities, can be found on the TSB website.Footnote vi

Future-oriented condensed statement of operations
For the year ended March 31
(in dollars)
Financial information Estimated results
2014-15
Planned results
2015-16
Difference
Total expenses 34,870,000 35,382,000 +1.5%
Total revenues 30,000 35,000 +16.7%
Net cost of operations 34,840,000 35,347,000 +1.5%

As shown in the table above, the TSB is projecting a net cost of operations of $35.4 million for 2015-16. This projection is based upon funding requested in the 2015–16 Main Estimates, plus estimated unused funding to be carried forward from 2014–15 and compensation adjustments for terminable allowances. On an accrual accounting basis, the TSB is forecasting less than a 2% variation in the net cost of operations expenses between years. The increase in expenses in 2015-16 is mainly due to an estimated increase in salary expenses.

Supplementary information table

The electronic version of the table containing information about our approach to the greening of government operations can be found on the TSB website.Footnote vii

Section IV: Organizational contact information

Additional information about the Transportation Safety Board of Canada and its activities is available on the TSB websiteFootnote viii or by contacting us at:

Transportation Safety Board of Canada
Place du Centre
200 Promenade du Portage, 4th Floor
Gatineau, Quebec K1A 1K8

E-mail: communications@bst-tsb.gc.ca
Social media: social@bst-tsb.gc.ca
Toll Free: 1-800-387-3557
Fax: 819-997-2239

Appendix: Definitions

appropriation:
Any authority of Parliament to pay money out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund.
budgetary expenditures:
Include operating and capital expenditures; transfer payments to other levels of government, organizations or individuals; and payments to Crown corporations.
Departmental Performance Report:
Reports on an appropriated organization's actual accomplishments against the plans, priorities and expected results set out in the corresponding Reports on Plans and Priorities. These reports are tabled in Parliament in the fall.
full-time equivalent (FTE):
Is a measure of the extent to which an employee represents a full person‑year charge against a departmental budget. Full-time equivalents are calculated as a ratio of assigned hours of work to scheduled hours of work. Scheduled hours of work are set out in collective agreements.
Government of Canada outcomes:
A set of 16 high-level objectives defined for the government as a whole, grouped in four spending areas: economic affairs, social affairs, international affairs and government affairs.
Management, Resources and Results Structure:
A comprehensive framework that consists of an organization's inventory of programs, resources, results, performance indicators and governance information. Programs and results are depicted in their hierarchical relationship to each other and to the Strategic Outcome(s) to which they contribute. The Management, Resources and Results Structure is developed from the Program Alignment Architecture.
non-budgetary expenditures:
Include net outlays and receipts related to loans, investments and advances, which change the composition of the financial assets of the Government of Canada.
performance:
What an organization did with its resources to achieve its results, how well those results compare to what the organization intended to achieve and how well lessons learned have been identified.
performance indicator:
A qualitative or quantitative means of measuring an output or outcome, with the intention of gauging the performance of an organization, program, policy or initiative respecting expected results.
performance reporting:
The process of communicating evidence-based performance information. Performance reporting supports decision making, accountability and transparency.
planned spending:
For Reports on Plans and Priorities (RPPs) and Departmental Performance Reports (DPRs), planned spending refers to those amounts that receive Treasury Board approval by February 1. Therefore, planned spending may include amounts incremental to planned expenditures presented in the Main Estimates. A department is expected to be aware of the authorities that it has sought and received. The determination of planned spending is a departmental responsibility, and departments must be able to defend the expenditure and accrual numbers presented in their RPPs and DPRs.
plans:
The articulation of strategic choices, which provides information on how an organization intends to achieve its priorities and associated results. Generally a plan will explain the logic behind the strategies chosen and tend to focus on actions that lead up to the expected result.
priorities:
Plans or projects that an organization has chosen to focus and report on during the planning period. Priorities represent the things that are most important or what must be done first to support the achievement of the desired Strategic Outcome(s).
program:
A group of related resource inputs and activities that are managed to meet specific needs and to achieve intended results and that are treated as a budgetary unit.
Program alignment architecture:
A structured inventory of an organization's programs depicting the hierarchical relationship between programs and the Strategic Outcome(s) to which they contribute.
Report on Plans and Priorities:
Provides information on the plans and expected performance of appropriated organizations over a three-year period. These reports are tabled in Parliament each spring.
results:
An external consequence attributed, in part, to an organization, policy, program or initiative. Results are not within the control of a single organization, policy, program or initiative; instead they are within the area of the organization's influence.
Strategic Outcome:
A long-term and enduring benefit to Canadians that is linked to the organization's mandate, vision and core functions.
sunset program:
A time-limited program that does not have an ongoing funding and policy authority. When the program is set to expire, a decision must be made whether to continue the program. In the case of a renewal, the decision specifies the scope, funding level and duration.
target:
A measurable performance or success level that an organization, program or initiative plans to achieve within a specified time period. Targets can be either quantitative or qualitative.
whole-of-government framework:
Maps the financial contributions of federal organizations receiving appropriations by aligning their Programs to a set of 16 government-wide, high-level outcome areas, grouped under four spending areas.

Endnotes

Endnote i

Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act: http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/C-23.4/index.html

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Endnote ii

Transportation Safety Board of Canada, http://www.tsb.gc.ca

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Endnote iii

Transportation Safety Board of Canada, http://www.tsb.gc.ca/eng/publications/index.asp

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Endnote iv

Whole-of-Government Framework, http://tbs-sct.gc.ca/ppg-cpr/frame-cadre-eng.aspx

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Endnote v

Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat, http://www.tbs-sct.gc.ca/ems-sgd/esp-pbc/esp-pbc-eng.asp

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Endnote vi

Transportation Safety Board of Canada, http://www.bst.gc.ca/eng/publications/index.asp

Return to endnote vi referrer

Endnote vii

Transportation Safety Board of Canada, http://www.bst.gc.ca/eng/publications/index.asp

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Endnote viii

Transportation Safety Board of Canada, http://www.tsb.gc.ca/eng

Return to endnote viii referrer