December 23, 2021: “It’s every day,” one trucker says of accidents on Highway 11/17. “Every, single day.” Photo: Skilled Truckers Canada
“Highway 11/17 kills people,” says Richard Deschamps. “We need to come together and tell this Ontario government enough is enough.
“Enough with the deaths enough with these inexperienced, dangerous and unqualified drivers not respecting basic rules of our roads, enough with the carnage, enough with our safety being put in jeopardy every single time we use Highway 11/17, enough with the government not taking these issues seriously,” writes Richard Deschamps, who has launched a petition on change.org to pressure the Ontario government into taking action. “They need to take responsibility for these deadly actions.
“Preventable accidents are a daily occurrence, and are ridiculously on the rise, not a single day goes by, that someone’s father, mother, son or daughter’s safety is at risk….just a few days ago, we tragically lost a driver, his wife is in the hospital with serious injuries, his family, friends, coworkers scarred for life. Without a doubt anyone who uses these highway’s have a story to tell, a near miss, a witness to erratic driving.
“Let’s work together for a safer and better highway.”
The province of Ontario, in its Draft Transportation Plan for Northern Ontario, lists “advancing highway widening projects including sections of Highway 69, Highway 11/17 and Highway 17” as its first priority.
“We recognize that the North has unique transportation challenges,” says Transportation Minister Caroline Mulroney in her message, listing “vast distances between communities, winter storms and the natural landscape” as three of the top issues. The plan does not address dangerous driving or unqualified drivers.
At time of posting, Road Warrior News has not yet received a response from Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation regarding winter training for licensed truck drivers and Ontario’s response to the petition.