TORONTO, Ont. — The Ontario Trucking Association announced recently that technology is on the way to help improve compliance in the aggregate sector.
The OTA said the Ministry of Transportation’s Aggregate Industry Working Group which is comprised of shippers, carriers, equipment suppliers, the OTA, and MTO, recently met to discuss efforts underway to develop a database system that will be used by enforcement and shippers to determine gross and axle weight allowances for each vehicle transporting aggregate in the province.
“MTO is showing strong leadership with this initiative. The longstanding view that overloaded trucks in the gravel sector are acceptable must come to end. This project, if realized, will be a significant step forward in ensuring compliance by all shippers and carriers in the gravel sector,” said Geoff Wood, v.p. of policy, OTA.
The database concept, funded by MTO and supported by aggregate shippers and carriers, is now in its prototype phase and will assign a unique identifier to each truck, tractor and trailer in the province that is involved in the transportation of aggregate. Although there are many complexities to the aggregate shipping issue, the database will provide enough information to support more fact-based decisions and accountability in the future.
The plan calls for a phased-in approach to measure-up the specifications and weight allowances for vehicles involved in the aggregate sector and enter that information into the secure database. Aggregate shippers will then be able access the database to determine the proper amount and weight of aggregate that can be loaded on a specific vehicle and verify compliance before it leaves the pit.
The OTA added that the complexity of the database will serve as an educational tool for shippers and carriers in the aggregate business to assist with proper loading of these vehicles.