As any commuter or carrier knows, rest areas are lacking in our province. This creates major issues for the truck transport community; the STA is actively advocating for expansion of existing areas and creation of new pull outs, rest areas and truck stops created by both the public and private sectors.
Saskatchewan is notorious for the lack of infrastructure that allows drivers to follow the law. Truck stops are in short supply but so are basic rest areas, pull outs and extra wide shoulders. In order to do so safely – truck drivers need rest areas.
Obviously, this is not an issue only in Saskatchewan. Many provinces face similar issues, including New West Trade Agreement Partnership provinces, which is why it made the top nine priority list that was submitted to all the provincial governments earlier this year.
As an industry advocate, the STA is all too aware of this issues this lack on infrastructure creates. Trucking companies are governed by sets of regulations, both provincially and nationally, one of the regulations is the National Safety Code (NSC). The NSC is a code of minimum performance standards, applying to all persons responsible for the safe operation of commercial vehicles. There are 15 NSC standards, ranging from commercial driver license requirements to carrier facility audits. NSC Standard 9 -Hours of Service Regulations, NSC Standard 10 -Cargo Securement Checks and NSC Standard 13- Trip Inspections, all require commercial drivers to stop the truck. From checking cargo to doing a trip inspection, stopping the vehicle is required by law. These regulations are put into place for the safety of both the truck driver and other road users. In order for truck drivers to be compliant with the regulations – trucks must pull over. Unfortunately, in Saskatchewan, there is a very limited number of places that this can safely be done. The lack of rest areas results in drivers being pulled over on the side of busy highways, areas designated for commuter parking only or on highway off ramps. This poses a serious threat to truck drivers safety.The creation of rest areas pull outs and truck stops is an ongoing advocacy effort for the STA.
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