April 6, 2021

Shipping issues exacerbated by container shortages and Suez Canal incident

The Shipping Federation of Canada is raising concerns over the impact of a potential strike at the Port of Montreal. The trade association representing the interests of ocean-going ships says the threat of a work stoppage is forcing North American importers and exporters to divert large volumes of international cargo away from the Port, causing significant supply chain disruptions.

The impact on our industry is massive as the contracting industry is already experiencing a backlog of freight throughout North America, says Brahm Swirsky, vice president of procurement and director at NEXT Plumbing and Hydronics Supply in Vaughan, ON. “There’s already a tremendous amount sitting on the water and the rail lines are backlogged as well.”

What would normally take five to seven days to reach its destination is already stretching to weeks, he adds. “While a bulk of the freight for our industry comes through Vancouver, any interruption – even if it’s a week – will have long-term ramifications for future deliveries because we don’t have the resources to catch up immediately. This impacts not only finished goods, but raw materials as well, so the delays are affecting contractors, distributors and manufacturers alike. I haven’t seen supply chain challenges like this in the last 30 years we’ve been in business.”

On March 21, unionized dockworkers at Canada's second-largest port rejected an offer from management, a union representative said, raising industry fears of a new strike. At the same time a global container shortage, and the recently resolved container ship crisis in the Suez Canal, are among other factors impacting shipping (see Parting Shot).

HRAI and CIPH have joined a group of industry leaders in various sectors to voice their concerns regarding a potential strike to the Minister of Labour and Minister of Transportation. The joint statement can be found here.


Right Time adds AtlasCare to its portfolio

St. Catharines, ON-based Right Time Group of Companies has acquired Atlas Service Company Inc. (AtlasCare).

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Budget targets high school exposure to skilled trades

Ontario’s recent budget has allocated a total of $288.2 million in 2021-22 for the Skilled Trades Strategy, which was first announced in Budget 2020.

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AHRI releases refrigerant flammability research results

The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute has released results of a project in which refrigerants classified by ASHRAE as A2L (lower flammability) were tested and compared with A1 (no flame-spread) refrigerants in real-world situations.

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Vancouver improves heat pump permitting process

The City of Vancouver is working to improve permitting processes for heat pump installations in existing low-rise housing.

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New automated certificate of inspection process for BPV
device owners

The Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA) has implemented an automated process for certificates of inspection (COIs) for boiler and pressure vessel (BPV)
device owners.

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Flocor named Xtralis distributor for Canada

Flocor has been appointed as a distributor partner by Xtralis. Flocor will supply the complete range of Xtralis life safety products in the VESDA-E, VESDA and OSID ranges.

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BC Hydro extends deadline for Double the Rebate

BC Hydro is extending the installation timeline for its Double the Rebate promotion. Homeowners who have received their code can extend the time for installation and invoicing of upgrades to June 30, 2021.

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Watts manager receives Canadian Sales Rep Award

Derrick Lundy, manager, commercial products at Watts Water Technologies in Burlington, ON received the 2020 Watts Canadian Sales Rep Award.

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ecobee partners with Parity Inc.

Smart thermostat developer ecobee Inc. and energy efficiency software company Parity Inc. have partnered to make smart thermostats more easily accessible to multi-residential buildings across North America.

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Canada and BC invest in green infrastructure projects

Funding for the construction of a new Passive House certified building in Castlegar, BC and for the construction of a biomass energy centre in the District of Sicamous will come from the federal and provincial governments.

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Ontario and Alberta schools getting funding boosts

COVID-19 has drawn attention to the state of institutions across Canada. Several recent funding announcements reflect a realization by governments that in many cases remediation or replacement is called for.

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Palser wins Watts Marketing Excellence Award

Mechanical and architectural marketing agency Palser Enterprises Ltd. has received the Watts Water Technologies Marketing Excellence Award (Canada).

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New SVP and general manager at Laars

Bradford White Corp. has appointed Rich Simons senior vice president and general manager of Laars Heating Systems Company.

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Fujitsu and Ventacity partner in commercial building
electrification study

Fujitsu General America, Inc., in partnership with the Institute for Market Transformation and Ventacity Systems, is conducting demonstrations of building electrification using a new systems-based approach to commercial HVAC.

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Evergreen boilers transition to Evergreen Pro

Weil-McLain Canada is rebranding its long-running line of Evergreen commercial grade boilers as the Evergreen Pro.

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Ontario expands apprenticeship program support

The Ontario government is investing $47 million in 2021-22 to hire more apprentices, improve the quality of training and help them complete their training and certification through the new Achievement Incentive Program and the expanded Apprenticeship Capital Grant.

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City of St. John’s tables community climate plan

City of St. John’s has tabled its Resilient St. John’s Community Climate Plan that identifies over 60 impacts of climate change on the community, 15 of which are the most likely to occur.

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CIPH presents six Lifetime Service Awards

Harald Prell, president of Viessmann Manufacturing Company Inc., was one of six industry professionals to receive a Lifetime Service Award.

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Neutra-Safe® Innovative Products Neutralize Condensate

Neutra-Safe® is the clear choice for Condensate Neutralizers, Neutralizing Condensate Pumps and Model Specific Recharge Kits. Our clear tube-style models and pump base allow for visual inspection. Safeguard drains, sewer system and the environment from acidic condensate. Visit neutrasafe.com for more information.

IMF Series Mixed Flow Fans

Canarm’s mixed flow fans are available in direct or belt drive and are available from 16” to 49” sizes, delivering 1500 to 45,000 CFM. These fans combine the benefits of axial and centrifugal flow fans, allowing the mixed flow wheel to yield high performance, high efficiency with low sound levels.

Safe, Smooth Pipe Bevels

Pipe beveling desires quick, consistent bevels. As operators move fast from pipe to pipe, a lightweight solution is needed. Cordless methods, with no gas fumes or exposed blades are ideal. REED Bevel Boss provides a safe way for operators to bevel plastic pipe. Move fast, bevel consistently, work safely.

New Heating and Hot Water Solution!

The Navien and iFlow high-efficiency combo system provides both space heating and endless domestic hot water, outperforming even the highest AFUE, Energy-Star rated furnaces. Easy retro-fit installation by installing an approved single pipe vent system installed inside the existing B-Vent or Chimney. CSA P9.11 Certified Combination. Available at ECCO Supply.


Combustion Analyzer

High-leverage pliers

Fire tube boiler

Diggin’ dachshunds to the rescue in Suez Canal

Crusoe and Oakley, two hardworking little #wienerdogs, dig in to free the #EverGiven container ship. Dachshunds dig because it's in their nature – they were bred to burrow into the earth and catch badgers. Some also dig out of boredom or for fun, but in this case Crusoe and Oakley were clearly committed to opening up the #SuezCanal and getting the supply chain on track again. As the ship moved on, the two heroes cued up for well-deserved treats for their astounding excavating skills!


May 5-7, 2021
Controls Con

May 11-12, 2021
Emerging Water Technology Symposium

May 12-13, 2021

Retrofit Canada Conference


Keep an eye out on mechanicalbusiness.com for our Mar/Apr
Cover Story:

Family Holmes: Mike, Sherry and Michael

In our March/April issue, Mike, Sherry and Michael Holmes talk about radon awareness, improving the perception of the skilled trades, and their recent shift to helping organizations revitalize their spaces.
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