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Publisher’s Comment Let’s hope the 407 becomes a faded memory

A few months ago, I wrote about the unfair treatment commercial traffic was being subjected to while using Highway 407.Needless to say, it's still going on. To add fuel to the fire, while we were all ...


Rob Wilkins
Rob Wilkins

A few months ago, I wrote about the unfair treatment commercial traffic was being subjected to while using Highway 407.

Needless to say, it’s still going on. To add fuel to the fire, while we were all enjoying a little Christmas cheer, our good friends at the 407ETR were planning their fifth toll increase in the past 40 months.

I’m sure you’ve all heard the expression “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore.”

Well, I am and my New Year’s resolution is to do my part to stop the insanity.

How could I possibly make a difference you might ask?

Well, let me tell you…in the 1999 agreement between the Tory government and 407ETR there is a clause that states the 407ETR can increase tolls as desired, providing traffic increases.

At the same time – and here’s the kicker – the 407ETR can be penalized if tolls increase and traffic declines.

Now, here’s how we can all make a difference…let’s all STOP USING IT! That’s it, that’s all.

Just say “No.”

You may think, one person boycotting this monster can’t make a difference.

Maybe you’re right, maybe one can’t.

But if we all spread the word to our family, friends, fellow drivers and O/Os you just never know.

Most of the larger fleets refuse to use the 407 unless it’s paid for by their customers.

I’m suggesting that O/Os take a serious look at this as well.

Is that extra load really worth it at the end of the day?

By the time you’ve paid the 38.85-cent-per-klick charge (starting Feb. 1 during peak hours) and risked being fined by Officer Dibble (for your transponder being out of place or an obstructed license plate) how much further are you really ahead?

Another thing that makes my blood boil is their justification of this latest increase – highway extensions, lane widening, new ramps, signage and so on are how they are accounting for their actions.

Now you tell me – when you invest in a new tractor, do you immediately pass the cost directly back to your customers?

I don’t think so.

Hmm, maybe they forgot to budget road improvements into their business plan.

Not a chance.

They have the perfect arrangement.

As the population grows, so will their traffic and they knew that back in ’99.

It allows them carte blanche on rate increases for the next 100 years or so.

On the bright side, in 100 years, maybe we’ll all live in a “Jetsons” type of world and the 407 will be a faded memory.

Let’s hope so.

– Rob Wilkins is the publisher of Truck News and he can be reached at 416-442-2097.


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