Licence and permit processing disruptions during Covid-19 crisis

by Today's Trucking

VANCOUVER, B.C. – The Covid-19 crisis has forced several delays and suspensions with licensing and permit processes in the trucking industry, including the closure of the B.C. Trucking Association’s (BCTA) Port Pass office.

Effective at noon yesterday, all in-person traffic was closed at the office, and the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority (VFPA) implemented its own procedures to ensure ongoing supply chain activity within the Port of Vancouver.

Based on guidance from Transport Canada, all Port pass-related operations by the VFPA and other publishers will be suspended.

Any pass expiring over the next six weeks will be extended for 30 days beyond its expiry date.

Until further notice, no new Port passes will be issued, but during this time, terminals can provide temporary passes at their gates.

Further questions regarding Port passes can be emailed to portpass@bctrucking.com or sharonh@bctrucking.com.
Port of Vancouver

In Alberta, any upcoming expiry dates in March or April for drivers’ licences, identification cards, vehicle registration, or other permits and certifications are being extended until May 15.

Albertans with birthdays from March 17 to May 14 will have until May 15 to renew.

Effective today, road tests for commercial and passenger vehicles are suspended for at least four weeks, resuming only when safe to do so.

The Alberta Motor Transport Association is working with the province to determine if there are any urgent driving tests required for commercial licences in order to maintain the delivery of essential goods, such as food and medical supplies.

Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI) has temporarily suspended all road tests as well, but written tests, including those for commercial licences, are ongoing.

SGI’s Class 1 instructor course for mandatory entry-level training (MELT) scheduled for March 30 has been postponed until September.

SGI is also allowing an extension for commercial medical due dates, and have a nurse reviewing commercial medicals if a driver needs to pre-qualify.

As for Manitoba, anyone with a Professional Driver Improvement Course (PDIC) from the Manitoba Trucking Association (MTA) that will soon expire will receive an extension until May 31.

Manitoba’s permit office is also closed to in-person traffic, but permits are still being processed and services are to continue via telephone, online, email, and fax.

“We are hopeful that the province takes into consideration the extensions offered by other provinces as a possible solution during these challenging times,” the MTA told Today’s Trucking. “We want to keep essential goods moving and would hate for shipments to be hampered by red tape.”

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