STEWART, B.C. — B.C. has increased gross vehicle weight allowances for mining trucks running from the Yukon south along Hwy. 37 to the Port of Stewart.
Transport Minister Shirley Bond said axle weight limits will remain in place, but the overall gross vehicle weights will be increased which will make it more feasible for mining companies to ship goods out of the Port of Stewart.
“Shipping out of the Port of Stewart will allow the economic benefits to remain in British Columbia, specifically the communities of Stewart and Dease Lake,” said Bond. “Allowing larger, more efficient trucks will reduce the number of vehicles on the road, cut transportation costs, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and maintain our provincial highway system, by reducing pavement damage.”
Yukon Zinc Corp. will be the first company to take advantage of the program, beginning in June. The weight limit increase allows the company to ship out of the Port of Stewart rather than the Port of Skagway in Alaska.
The trucks used by Yukon Zinc will gross out at 72,300 kgs, up from the previous limit of 63,500 kgs. The company says this will allow it to reduce truck trips by 17%. “The bulk haul program is the result of a tremendous amount of effort and co-ordination between the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, industry and stakeholders. On behalf of Yukon Zinc Corporation, we extend our sincere thanks to the contribution made by everyone involved,” said Raymond Mah, chief operating officer of Yukon Zinc Corporation.
Theprovince says the program will also create 50 full-time driver and mechanic jobs in the communities of Stewart and Dease Lake and will also increase employment at the port.
Trucks participating in the program must: be restricted to specified highways; be equipped with EOBRs to monitor driver hours-of-service and speed; and be driven by drivers with at least 100,000 kms of driving experience on similar highways with similar equipment. Drivers must also be accident-free for two years.
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