Santa Claus Cleared for Take Off – Transport Canada Approves Sleigh


OTTAWA – Christmas is almost here. One of the key steps in Santa Claus’s annual flight to deliver toys is ensuring that his sleigh is ready. “I am delighted to clear Santa for flight in Canadian airspace to take to the skies safely this Christmas Eve. I want to remind Santa and all Canadians to drive safely in our Canadian winter conditions. I wish everyone safe and happy travels this holiday season,” states Minister Garneau.

Transport Canada is happy to announce that Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport, has cleared Santa Claus for take-off as he prepares for this year’s round-the-world flight to deliver presents to millions of children. Once again, Transport Canada officials have inspected Santa’s sleigh and validated his pilot’s license before he takes off on Christmas Eve.

Officials inspected the sleigh navigation and safety systems, harnesses, landing gear, onboard navigation equipment and, of course, Rudolph’s nose. Santa was reminded of the importance of being well-rested before flying, and to do detailed pre-flight checks that include looking for ice buildup on the sleigh and reindeer, and reminded not to be distracted by eating too many Christmas cookies. Now that Santa has passed his medical and flight tests, he is once again ready to take to the skies.

Santa’s team of engineer elves has been working with Transport Canada on an innovative new project. This year, Santa’s sleigh features new driver assistance technology which will make travelling across the world even safer.

Transport Canada has been partnering with experts from government, organizations, industry and academia on this technology as well as additional safe driving innovations such as connected and automated vehicles, and zero-emission vehicles. Learning about Santa’s sleigh driver assistance technology has been a dream for road safety engineers.

During this holiday season, Minister Garneau and Santa Claus want to remind all drivers of the need to be alert, well-rested and not impaired by alcohol or drugs, including cannabis. Here are tips for staying safe on our roads this season:

  • Secure all passengers and goods in your vehicle. All passengers must be wearing seatbelts, and children secured in the appropriate child car seats.
  • Learn about your vehicle’s features before driving. Not all driver assistance systems work the same or are named the same way.  Consult sources, such as the owner’s manual or the manufacturer’s website,
  • Driver assistances technologies do not replace drivers. Systems may not detect all objects or vehicles, and may not work in all road or weather conditions. Stay engaged and focused on driving at all times, even when driver assistance technologies are activated.
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