Tuesday, April 16, 2024
Image: TFSH
Guest CommentaryRoad Safety DiscussionTrucking

Winter is coming; swift, serious solutions needed for road safety, says TSH

Open letter to Transportation Minister Prabmeet Sarkaria

We at Truckers for Safer Highways are hopeful at the news of a new Minister of Transportation (MTO) within the government of Ontario. We have been advocating the former minister for serious changes and improvements to the trucking industry for several years now and have seen little change. 

The Honourable Prabmeet Sarkaria, Ontario’s Minister of Transportation Photo: LAO

We are extremely concerned that this coming winter, Ontarians will face more tragedy on our highways than we have to this day. With each winter, the issue of unqualified and poorly trained drivers only becomes even more clear to all road users. 

Last winter, throughout Ontario, we faced lengthy road closures due to serious collisions, multiple times a week. These collisions were often unnecessary and would have been preventable had these drivers been properly prepared for the conditions they may face, or simply chose to park and wait out the weather. We are truly hoping the increase of MTO officers in northern regions is not a temporary measure and will continue throughout the winter. 

It is our hope that this new Minister of Transportation will see the issues on our highways and in the trucking industry as things that in need of swift and serious solutions.

We need serious curriculum improvements of the Minimum Entry Level Training (MELT) for new drivers, as well as serious long term highway and commercial vehicle enforcement plans including the near full-time operation of scale and inspection stations throughout the province. This should be to ensure the vehicles and their operators on our highways are doing so safely and legally.

People are dying on our highways at an alarming rate, and we must do all we can to prevent further injuries and fatalities. 

This is our plea for the new Minister and his office to hear our concerns. 

Travis McDougall 

Co-founder 

Truckers for Safer Highways 

[email protected]