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Nova Scotia launches long-combination vehicle pilot project

HALIFAX, N.S. -- A pilot project in Nova Scotia will allow double 53-ft. semi-trailers to be hauled by a single tra...

HALIFAX, N.S. — A pilot project in Nova Scotia will allow double 53-ft. semi-trailers to be hauled by a single tractor-trailer on selected stretches of highway.

Officials are hoping that these long-combination vehicles (LCVs) will help increase business to the Port of Halifax, transloading facilities where shipments are transferred to and from trucks, and other transportation partners. The Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal will assess the vehicles on selected four-lane highways.

“LCVs will help expand business and competitiveness in Nova Scotia,” said Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal Minister Murray Scott. “They will help increase Nova Scotia’s competitiveness with other East Coast ports, and boost the transportation industry in this province.”

Other potential benefits of long-combination vehicles include reduced truck traffic, by using one engine to haul two trailers, and environmental advantages such a using less fuel and cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

“We are pleased the province of Nova Scotia will be launching this pilot project,” said George Malec, vice-president of business development and operations for the Halifax Port Authority. “Many customers of the port, and especially those involved in transload, want to use LCVs to transport their goods to inland markets.

“This pilot provides options for our customers to grow their business through the Port of Halifax.”

Under the pilot program, the vehicles will be permitted to operate under strict conditions, including only on four-lane divided highways from Halifax to the New Brunswick border, operating at a lower maximum speed of 90 km/h, and using trained drivers with a minimum of five years and 150,000 kilometres of tractor-trailer driving experience. Long-combination vehicles will be restricted during unfavourable weather, such as freezing rain, sleet, fog and heavy snow.

Qualified truck operators can participate in the pilot project, by submitting an application to drive LCVs. The vehicles could begin operating in Nova Scotia by Oct. 1. They are currently allowed to operate year-round in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, and seasonally in Quebec. British Columbia has enacted a pilot program for LCVs that will allow them to operate year-round, save the winter months. New Brunswick has announced LCVs will be allowed on all of its four-lane highways this summer.

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