Entry-level training standard coming for Canadian truckers

Change comes after the Humboldt Broncos bus crash tragedy

The country’s transportation ministers have agreed to develop an entry-level national training standard for semi-truck drivers.

Federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau said the minimum bar to get behind the wheel of a semi truck will ensure truckers have the necessary skills, and will be in place by January 2020.

READ MORE: Trucking company suspended after Humboldt bus crash

“We are motivated by the need for safety,” Garneau told reporters in Montreal. “Canadians expect that people who receive their licence as drivers of semi-trailers and large vehicles should be properly prepared through training before they assume those duties.”

Currently, Ontario is the only province with mandatory truck driver training. Saskatchewan and Alberta are to require mandatory training starting in March.

The changes in Saskatchewan came after last year’s Humboldt Broncos bus crash tragedy, which Garneau referenced at a Montreal press conference following a transportation ministers meeting Monday.

Sixteen people were killed when the team’s bus and a semi-unit loaded with peat moss collided last April.

The driver of the semi-truck recently pleaded guilty to all charges against him, telling his lawyer he did not “want to make things any worse.”

Saskatchewan Highways Minister Lori Carr said the tragedy served as a reminder of the need for stricter trucking regulations across the board.

“We are truly one big country, and you go from province to province, so the same rules should apply,” Carr said.

Garneau added that a three-month-old task force examining school bus safety is ongoing and did not confirm whether wearing seatbelts will become mandatory.

He pointed out that riders range widely in age, with implications for safety and emergency protocols.

“What happens if there is an emergency and everybody has to get out of the bus quickly?” Garneau asked.

“We’re looking for pilot projects and we’re looking to do this as quickly as possible so that we evaluate the issue of seatbelts. At the same time, we’re looking at other things.”

The federal government can mandate seatbelts on new buses, but the jurisdiction around any compulsory retrofits on existing buses lies with the provinces, Garneau added.

The ministers also agreed to continue to try to harmonize technical standards for electronic logging devices on trucks with an eye to more efficient interprovincial trade.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Kelowna man in wheelchair following police-involved shooting

“Shots were fired by police and the male was transported to the hospital with serious injuries.”

Interior Health sees uptick in calls about measles after outbreak in Vancouver

IH has received an extra few hundred calls about measle immunization and status

‘His kids were No. 1’: Wife remembers man shot dead in Kamloops

Wife of Kamloops shooting victim describes him as loving, hardworking family man

Lake Country staff work to mitigate wildfire risk in Okanagan Centre

Staff have been removing forest fuels and some trees

West Kelowna pulls together for family’s pop-can tab collections

Thompson Chadsey collects aluminum pop-can tabs to repay his hospital

5 Events to check out at local ski hills

Check out this new column from Okanagan events guru Christina Ferreira

Sell regulated heroin to curb B.C.’s overdose problem: report

B.C. Centre on Substance Use points to organized crime and money-laundering as contributing factors

Peter Tork, Monkees’ lovable bass-guitar player, dies at 77

Tork, Micky Dolenz, David Jones and Michael Nesmith formed the made-for-television rock band

From a drunk judge to Clifford Olson: George Garrett recounts a life in B.C. news radio

New book from ‘Intrepid Reporter’ George Garrett offers readers a glimpse behind the headlines

Shuswap police look for suspect in intentionally-set fire

Men help extinguish blaze by kicking snow on it

Former Okanagan fire chief sues City of Vernon after termination

Keith Green’s civil claim says that he believes he was wrongfully terminated

Okanagan man cashes in $500,000 Daily Grand lotto ticket

Penticton resident Harald Naegel won using his regular five numbers

Alberta’s oil-by-rail plan a worry for Shuswap mayor

High volume of train traffic already an environmental/public safety concern

Most Read