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Province should pursue “bottom feeders”: OTA

TORONTO, Ont. -- The provincial government should pursue the "bottom feeders" who give the industry a bad name, OTA...

TORONTO, Ont. — The provincial government should pursue the “bottom feeders” who give the industry a bad name, OTA president David Bradley said today.

Bradley made the comment in the wake of the media frenzy surrounding Wednesday’s truck-trailer crash on the 401 in Toronto, and a provincial announcement that the Transport Minister intends to investigate the carrier involved.
Bradley said if the provincial government was serious about further improving truck safety it would concentrate its enforcement efforts on the "bottom feeders" of the industry.

"We know who those carriers are and the government knows who they are, yet those companies continue to operate like everyone else putting the public at risk and distorting the market for good carriers," said Bradley.

The Ministry of Transportation spends too much time auditing and inspecting the majority of carriers that don’t pose a risk, instead of putting the real problem companies out of business, said Bradley, adding the government should introduce a program of real competitive advantages for safe trucking companies. Shippers who use unsafe carriers should be held liable for accidents.

The provincial government also needs to crack down on truck driver "licence mills,” Bradley said. And, there needs to be a more coordinated and efficient process of cleaning up after accidents so that traffic disruptions are minimized, he added.

Trucks and truck drivers as a class are the safest vehicles and drivers on the highways and most car-truck crashes are not the fault of the truck driver, said Bradley.

"The government should be looking at re-introduction of a modified photo radar system and making how to share the road safely with trucks a mandatory part of car driver licence training and testing,” he said.

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