MONTREAL, Que. — Montreal Gateway Terminals’ offering of stainless-steel coffee mugs, Krispy Kreme doughnuts and coffee in the morning and jumbo hot dogs and soft drinks in the afternoon drew 2,000 truck drivers to “Trucker Appreciation Day” tents at Montreal’s Cast and Racine container terminals June 9.
By all counts, the first-time event was a success, with perfect summer weather, 1,300 doughnuts and 1,600 hot dogs served. Both tents received a steady flow of truckers all day long, starting at 6 a.m.
“We dedicated this day to our partners in the trucking community, who carry thousands of containers every day,” said Michel Beauregard, president, Montreal Gateway Terminals. “We are proud to work with them in ensuring our ever-growing cargo volumes move rapidly to and from the port.”
On the day of the event, six ships – the Canmar Venture, Atlantic Project and Lykes Sprinter at Racine, and the Flottbek, Canmar Endurance and Canmar Glory at Cast – were docked at the Port of Montreal’s MGT operations, and 1,700 trucks passed through the two container terminals. Gaston Gagnon, a trucker for Simard Transport who drives to the port nearly every day, was grateful for the snack at 10 a.m. “My breakfast was a long time ago,” he said, having gotten up at 4 a.m.
Cast and Racine’s volumes have been growing steadily over the last few years. Mr. Beauregard said that extending gate hours, investing in high-tech container-handling equipment and deploying new information technology have helped to improve efficiency. (In response to demand, MGT recently extended its truck-gate hours to 18 hours a day, four days a week, while absorbing the extra cost.) That said, it is not just about the turn-around.
“Our mission is to safely, securely and efficiently process each and every trucker that calls at our terminals,” said Kevin Doherty, MGT vice-president and general manager. “It is more than just a job; it is our duty, day in and day out.”
Doherty said the new staging area at Section 73-74 North (Cast Terminal) helped keep things moving smoothly, and that the Montreal Port Authority would soon be issuing port-access cards to truckers.
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