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Brandon’s planned ban

BRANDON, Man. - In a move that would virtually cripple the movement of freight to this Manitoba city, officials in Brandon have proposed banning combination vehicles from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., between Fi...


BRANDON, Man. – In a move that would virtually cripple the movement of freight to this Manitoba city, officials in Brandon have proposed banning combination vehicles from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., between First and Eighteenth Streets.

The city says it is currently studying the idea, which would apply to any doubles over 25 metres long, hoping to travel on Hwy. 1A.

“Nothing has been tabled yet,” stresses Ted Snure, a city engineer.

As Truck News went to press, the city was set to hold an information session with all of the relevant stakeholders. While Snure is the city engineer, he’s also a resident of the impacted area.

“The trucks go by my door every day,” says Snure. “They have to take up three lanes of traffic in order to make the turn onto First Street, which is Hwy. 1A as it goes through the city.”

He says there is a great deal of concern due to the grocery store and senior’s complex also located on the same corner, as well as traffic heading east-west from the community college to a residential area.

“The concern is someone is going to get squeezed as they make that turn,” says Snure. “A car could come up on the right hand side, not noticing the blinker on the truck, and they don’t stop soon enough.”

Rather than banning the commercial traffic altogether, Snure says he suggested the daytime restrictions – leaving trucks access during reduced traffic hours.

“It’s just one trucking firm using this particular route that has double trailers coming that way all the time,” adds Snure, suggesting the impact would be minimal.

That fleet is Brandon’s own Smooth Freight. And its president Borden Hadley certainly doesn’t think the impact would be in any way slight.

“Ten at night to six in the morning just doesn’t cut it for anybody,” he complains of the proposed daytime ban. “I may as well close my doors.”

Hadley says he has 10 to 12 A-trains go out during the hours of the proposed ban, primarily hauling for Maple Leaf Pork.

“They way they have it worded right now, we wouldn’t even be allowed to come into our terminal and then split them in the yard,” he says. “They’re saying you’ll have to buy some land outside the city.”

He suspects a handful of complaints from citizens to a couple of city councillor about the amount of truck traffic going through the city sparked the issue.

“They raised enough concern that they started to do some surveys and the rest of it,” says Hadley. “They didn’t really do their homework before they bit into it.”

He adds that he can’t think of another city in Canada that stops fleets from delivering during business hours.

“What a precedent this would set,” he says. While anything can happen when municipalities look at restricting truck traffic, Hadley is hopeful Brandon’s plan will die on the vine.

“It’s still a little early, there’s going to be the meeting at city council and I think there’s going to be enough representation at that meeting to show them it’s pretty near impossible to stop truck traffic through the city during business hours,” says Hadley. “You’ve got carriers going through the city with B-trains delivering product to the lumber yards and all over the place. Who’s open between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.?” n


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