Full-Length Boat Tails Trailing Behind ON Trucks

HAYWARD, CA — Ontario is the first Canadian province to make the regulatory changes needed for trucking fleets to use boat tails devices up to five feet in length, like those U.S. fleets can use. 

Boat tails are aerodynamic devices installed on the back of trailers to reduce drag and greenhouse gas emissions.

“We are thrilled that the regulatory hurdles have been overcome and that we can now provide fleets with the highest efficiency trailers in the industry,” said Andrew Smith, CEO of ATDynamics, makers of fuel-saving technology for trucks. “ATDynamics has worked with Canadian regulators since 2009 to amend the commercial vehicle weight and dimension regulations to allow maximum efficiency boat tail technologies to operate in Canada.” 

In December 2013, Transport Canada amended its Motor Vehicle Safety Act (MVSA) to allow boat tail devices up to five feet in length to operate on Canadian roadways, as compared to previous regulations which only allowed boat tail devices under two feet in length. 

ATDynamics claims their TrailerTail technology has the potential to reduce the fuel consumption of Canadian trucking operations by more than 63 million gallons of diesel fuel per year, saving the Canadian economy nearly $3 billion over the next 10 years. 

The next step is for other provinces to also change their local vehicle codes to reflect the amended MVSA and the B.C. Trucking Association (BCTA) expects B.C. to follow Ontario’s lead in changing the weights and dimensions for boat tails.

“BCTA expects the change to be adopted in B.C. regulations following of an update to the National MOU on vehicle weights and dimensions (likely coming as a result of the next meeting of the federal Task Force Meeting on Vehicle Weights and Dimensions in October 2014),” the association said in a statement. “However, it is also likely, as in Ontario, that the Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement branch will allow use of longer boat tails under general authorization prior to the regulatory change.”

“Until all the Provinces adopt a similar program as Ontario, motor carriers hauling freight in those Provinces will be operating at a five-percent cost disadvantage as compared to fleets utilizing their TrailerTails in Ontario, not to mention the environmental and air quality benefits lost in each Province,” Smith said.

Because Ontario is the only province allowing the longer boat tails, carriers may now use the longer boat-tails in that province or between Ontario and the U.S.

Ontario carriers with full-length boat tails will have to fold them up before entering other provinces.

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