Canadian RV dealers who bring units into the country from the U.S. with a pre-clearance list that reduces hassles at the border are being audited by Transport Canada to assure that the units comply with Canadian highway safety laws.
”Nothing really has changed,” said Eleonore Hamm, executive vice president of the Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association of Canada (RVDA Canada). ”Transport Canada is just tightening down.”
Hamm said Transport Canada is charged with auditing the pre-clearance system every five to seven years for the different types of vehicles and trailers imported to Canada. ”It’s a bit cumbersome for dealers,” Hamm said.
Certifying compliance with Canada Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (CMVSS) is a dealer’s responsibility as the importer, Hamm said, because Canadian laws have no force in the U.S. where the units are manufactured, even though it is American manufacturers who certify that units are CMVSS compliant.
”Transport Canada is asking dealers to submit all the testing documents from the manufacturers,” Hamm said. ” They are going back several years.”
Primarily, the audits at this point only involve motorized RVs, Hamm reported.
If a dealer is not on the pre-certified list, each unit imported to Canada must be inspected at the border and a report sent to Transport Canada for approval which is a relatively lengthy process. Dealers on the pre-certified list only need to attest that each brand they bring into country meet Canadian standards without having to provide manufacturers’ documentation.
Hamm said that some dealers have delayed ordering units until the American manufacturer can provide the necessary safety documents.
”Considering a lot of them are getting product for showtime, it could be disruptive,” Hamm said. ”We’ve not heard of too many holdups yet at the border.”