MILTON, Ont. -- Truck inspection activities have been ground to a halt at the Trafalgar South Inspection Station over the past two days, as disgruntled gravel haulers have overtaken the site to protest overloading by customers and overzealous ticketing by MTO enforcement officers.
The Ontario Trucking Association (OTA) yesterday issued an alert, noting that at one point more than 50 trucks were parked at the weigh station, backing traffic up for five kilometres on Hwy. 401. Another protest took place in North Bay, involving about 60 drivers, the OTA reports.
Bob Nichols, spokesman for the MTO, told Trucknews.com the department will be meeting with aggregate haulers today to better understand their beef.
“As a ministry, our first concern is the safety of those using our highways,” he said. “Safety is our top priority.”
He said the protests in no way affected truck safety, with inspection efforts being uninterrupted at nearby scales in Whitby and Putnam.
“Aggregate haulers are protesting at one of our highway weigh stations after being charged for overweight loads,” Nichols acknowledged. “The rules we have in place about truck inspections and vehicle weight restrictions are designed to ensure that our roads are safe. Ministry staff have met with representatives, and have scheduled an additional meeting for Friday to get a clear understanding of their concerns and requests. As always, we are open to listening to our partners' concerns and to working with them on solutions.”