HALIFAX, N.S. -- Nova Scotia Transport Minister, Maurice Smith, addressed Atlantic Provinces Trucking Associations (APTA) delegates today, with a promise to work closely with the industry ad neighbouring provinces to improve harmonization.
Smith said his department oversees 4,100 bridges and 23,000 kilometres of road throughout Nova Scotia and wants to focus more on making improvements to roadways before they fall apart and require more costly repairs.
As such, the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal now works from a five-year road repair plan. Smith touted twinning of a section of Hwy. 104 near Antigonish as one of its latest achievements.
Smith also said his department will work closely with the APTA and other provinces to harmonize regulations related to weights and dimensions, and specifically the operation of long combination vehicles (LCVs).
Although he acknowledged the province’s LCV program is in its “relative infancy,” he admitted “We have seen great benefits in the years that companies have been using LCVs.”
A new working group is looking to harmonize LCV requirements across Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec and Ontario.
“By this time next year, the hope is that a driver can haul the same truck in Ontario and Quebec as in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia,” Smith said.
He also noted the APTA is developing a driver training database, which will serve as a one-stop shop for LCV training and certification requirements. It will also provide enforcement officers with a resource to determine if a driver is properly certified.
“This is a prime example of why we should work together,” Smith said.