Transports Quebec Provides Online Aid

by Carroll McCormick

To mention just three of them, truckers can calculate distances and travel times, examine overpasses and bridges for weight restrictions or study construction sites along a route for delays.

That’s a good thing, because there are more than 9,000 bridges and overpasses in Quebec.

To get info on them, go to the Transports Quebec Web site, and click on “structures” on the “route system” dropdown menu. You’ll find 91 pages of information on bridges and overpasses by number, municipality, route; whether trucks loaded to within their legal limits can pass over the structure; whether lower limits apply or whether the structure is forbidden to trucks altogether. The obstacle that each structure crosses; e.g., river, stream, is also listed.

The list can be rearranged so that it presents the structures in order of their number, the municipality the structures are in, the route they are on, etc. If you know the structure number or the municipality you are passing through, Rouyn-Noranda, for example, you can call up that map and examine the routes, structures and their numbers, and then do a search that will show you any weight restrictions.

The Web site also provides two kinds of maps: service centres (CS) and territorial management (DT) maps. CS maps show less territory and are much smaller (about 400 kilobytes for the former and 2,000 kilobytes for the latter) than DT maps, since it takes several CS maps to cover the area shown on a DT map. There is good data to mine here for trucks planning a trip.

Another neat tool on the Web site is a distance calculator. How far is it from Beaconsville to Levis?

Go to the “route distances” on the “route information” dropdown menu. Pick the origin and destination from two dropdown lists and in a couple of seconds the results – 281 kms and a two hour 55 minute drive pop up. In fact, if you have lost your Quebec highway map, you can call up an electronic map.

The first map gets you started: clicking on a region produces a detailed map that can be printed or saved in the computer for later reference.

The Web site also provides extensive information on its construction projects, a rather famous institution here every summer. Go to the “route information” drop down menu and click on “route work” and you can peruse an exhaustive, old-fashioned list of projects, start-end dates and, most important, what restrictions are in place for trucks.

The Web site has a very slick clickable map though that, once loaded into your computer, you can slide around so you can see anywhere in the province and then zoom in (the hot techno-term is “drill down”) on whatever region interests you. The map is littered with traffic cones, Transports Quebec’s way of representing roadwork.

Right clicking on a cone calls up a one-line description of where the project is and left-clicking on that line calls up the same full description of the project that is in the old-fashioned list of projects. Try it.

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