The National Inspection Standard for Commercial Vehicles


Ontario has adopted the National Inspection Standard for annual, semi-annual and Safety Standards Certificate inspections for the following types of commercial vehicles:

  • Trucks*
  • Trailers*
  • Buses
  • Accessible Vehicles
  • School Purposes Vehicles

* (see weight restrictions below)

The National Standard applies to these commercial vehicle types as detailed below:

Annual Inspection and Safety Standards Certificate (SSC):

  • Trucks, trailers and converter dollies alone or in combination with a total gross weight, registered gross weight or manufacturer’s gross vehicle weight rating exceeding 4,500 kilograms (kg),

Annual Inspection, Semi-annual Inspection and Safety Standards Certificate:

  • Buses designed for 10 or more passengers excluding those with a manufacturer’s gross vehicle weight rating of 4,500 kg or less used exclusively for personal use,
  • Accessible vehicles modified to be used for the purpose of transporting persons with disabilities, excluding those used only for personal purposes, and
  • School purposes vehicles operating under contract with a school board or other authority in charge of a school being used for the transportation of six or more children or adults with a developmental disability.

Instead of inspecting these vehicles to the requirements of Schedules 1, 2 and 4 of the Highway Traffic Act Regulation 611 the change means vehicles must be inspected to the National Safety Code Standard 11 Part B “Periodic Commercial Motor Vehicle Inspection” (National Standard). The Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA) produces the National Safety Code Standard for use across Canada.

Effective Dates:

Starting July 1, 2011 the National Standard will take effect by Regulation. However, the ministry will provide a 24 month period during which industry can choose to inspect vehicles to the inspection requirements of Regulation 611 Schedules 1, 2 and 4, as they were in effect June 30, 2011, or they can inspect commercial vehicles to the requirements in the National Standard. For the 24 month transition period from July 1, 2011 to June 30, 2013, vehicles must meet all of the requirements of the chosen standard.

This transition period will allow motor vehicle inspection station licensees, mechanics and owners and operators to become familiar with and apply the new inspection criteria. The transition period will also allow vehicle owners to bring their vehicles up to the requirements of the National Standard.

Starting July 1, 2013 all annual, semi-annual and SSC inspections for the vehicles described above must be conducted to the National Standard.

What is Not Changing

It is important to note that all the current standards under the Highway Traffic Act that apply to commercial vehicles operating on a highway, including on-road inspections, will remain as existing. The changes outlined above only apply to the annual, semi-annual and SSC inspections.

Please see annual, semi-annual and safety standard certificate inspections for more information including:

  • Ontario Guidelines to the National Standard
  • Ontario Customizations to the National Standard
  • Frequently Asked Questions

Coming soon:

  • Mechanics’ Activities Lists
  • Comparison of current standards and the National Standard
  • Sample record keeping documents

Amended Regulations can be found at e-Laws: