How do you deal with trailer snow and ice accumulation?
December 18, 2007
December 18, 2007
It’s that time of year again, the first significant snow fall has created havoc on Ontario roads and already the local new stations have begun complaining about snow and ice blowing off the roofs of trailers. It’s an age-old problem and one without a simple solution – at least not one that I’m aware of.
Due to the nature of the trucking industry, it’s nearly impossible to prevent snow and ice from accumulating on the roofs of trailers. Short of parking indoors every night – and we all know that’s not a realistic option for most truckers – what’s a guy to do?
The Workers Compensation Board doesn’t want drivers climbing up onto their trailers to clear the roof of snow and ice. That’s a recipe for a workplace accident if there ever was one.
Some companies have developed snow removal programs. Our on-road editor, Harry Rudolfs, tells me Purolator hires a crew that shows up with ropes, ladder and shovels and clears off the trailers before they hit the road. But in Purolator’s case, most of its trailers report to the terminal on a daily basis. That’s not the case for most long-haul fleets.
Apparently, there are some scales in Nova Scotia that installed snow removal devices last year. I’m told they work like a giant scraper to clear trailer roofs. A neat idea, but I’ve yet to see them in person so I couldn’t tell you how effective they are. I’d love to hear from anyone who has used these systems. Do they perform as-advertised?
Heated trailer roofs? Now there’s an idea. But I imagine it would be cost-prohibitive to implement and there are likely some engineering challenges as well. That’s all I’ve got, folks. Maybe you have a solution of your own you’d be willing to share? If so, I’d love to hear about it.
James Menzies is editor of Truck News magazine. He has been covering the Canadian trucking industry for more than 15 years and holds a CDL. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter at @JamesMenzies. All posts by James Menzies