OTA’s livestock division makes recommendations for animal transport

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TORONTO, Ont. — The Ontario Trucking Association (OTA) Livestock Transporters’ Division (LTD) is calling on industry members, customers and government to work together to create a safe, responsible and accountable system of live animal transport in the Province of Ontario.

The LTD recently issued a policy paper entitled, Policy Recommendation to Create a Safe, Educated and Accountable Live Animal Transportation Supply Chain, which outlines the Division’s proposal for improving the integrity of livestock transport in Ontario. Along with making several recommendations, the policy paper also provides a brief history of animal transportation in Ontario and discusses the impact of several changes on supply chain members, the state of animals in the care of trucking companies and issues of government oversight.

“Like every industry, our sector has undergone dramatic changes over the years greatly impacting our labour pool and our training and equipment requirements, as well as causing us to meet growing demands from fewer and fewer customers,” said Randy Scott, OTA LTD chairman.

Officials say the recommendations contained in the OTA LTD policy paper seek to ensure that animals are only entrusted to properly certified and trained trucking fleets.

“The OTA LTD is committed to jointly developing a system with government and other members of the supply chain that ensures livestock is only transported by certified carriers and drivers,” said OTA senior vice-president Stephen Laskowski. “However, within this system, government must be willing to impose penalties or fines on all members of the supply chain for failure to utilize certified transportation experts.”

The paper recommends that:

-Carriers retain control over their training programs in an effort to continually incorporate industry input, changes and best practices;

-Training programs such as TQA and CLT, perhaps modified versions based on industry input, be made mandatory for drivers of livestock-carrying trucks, accompanied by appropriate enforcement measures;

-That all livestock transporters should fall under the same provisions as trucks required to have a CVOR;

-Farmers and producers be required to ensure that their carriers satisfy CVOR requirements;

-An Entrant Program (EP) be developed for all trucking companies engaged in the movement of live animals in Ontario, requiring the completion of a one-day course on safety and animal knowledge;

-CFIA conduct random animal inspections at any loading points during livestock pickups to determine animal health;

-Excellence should be demanded at all points of the supply chain. In addition to ensuring livestock transporters are trained, CFIA inspectors and members of the on-road enforcement community should also be educated so they can optimally fulfill their duties;

-In addition to animal weight, all facilities handling livestock must be required to report previous feeding and watering of animals to drivers upon livestock pickup;

-MTO conduct annual safety blitzes on highways and rural roads focusing on livestock carriers;

-MTO conduct surprise mobile inspections at processing facilities;

-OTA LTD be given a seat on the Ontario Pork Board, ensuring livestock transporters are fairly represented; and

-The Ontario Pork Board review the freeze on 1992 rates.

The Ontario Trucking Association Livestock Transporters’ Division members operate close to 600 tractors across Ontario and Canada and enjoy over 50 years of experience in the transportation of live animals.  To obtain a copy of the paper or for more information on the LTD, contact deanna.pagnan@cantruck.ca.

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  • The Livestock trucking industy has seen drastic changes in the last 10 years, as CFIA imposes new regulations, which is needed to protect the welfare of livestock, and the integrity of our food supply chain.

    New programs and training is needed for the livestock transport industry, so they can compete and be compliant with current tranporting regulations of livestock.


  • As a driver with 10 years of livestock transport experience, I am not against a standardized system of training and certification. But if this is to become mandatory, then industry wages need to reflect this. When a tradesman like a welder or electrician becomes licensed, they are able to have a wage increase to reflect that certification. This industry needs to mirror the compensation of other trades if it expects to retain the professionals it already employs as well as be able to attract new “apprentices.”
    One other comment regarding professional livestock hauling. Some things about this business you just can’t be taught in a classroom – somethings are in your blood, they’re second nature. You either got it or you don’t. Many livestock drivers are farmboys – born and raised. That’s where it comes from.