TORONTO, Ont. – The Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) and American Trucking Associations (ATA) are both calling on governments to consider contingency plans if government offices begin to shut down during the fight against Covid-19.
In a joint statement, they’ve asked governments on both sides of the border to work with the trucking industry on contingencies to qualify government-issued licences or documentation that may expire during the outbreak.
Cited examples of the documents include: driver’s licences, commercial vehicle plates, oversize permits, hazmat or dangerous goods certificates, Free and Secure Trade (FAST) cards for cross-border travel, provincial driver abstracts, and other required documentation necessary for goods to move by truck both domestically and internationally.
The groups are also asking U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Canada Border Services Agency to work with the trucking industry to develop potential emergency operating measures for the Canada-U.S. border.
“These government-issued documents may become difficult, if not impossible, to renew if more drastic measures to stop the spread of the virus are implemented,” the groups say in a joint statement. “As such, trucking operations need clear guidance and support from governments on both sides of the border that operating on such expired documentation due to government shutdowns will not negatively impact their operations. Developing a contingency plan – such as temporary extensions – would help ensure that truck drivers and their companies are able to continue to deliver these critical goods to market, keep our economy running, while – most importantly – keeping the public safe with the essential products they need.”
“The business community and governments are faced with the challenge of having to react rapidly to the constantly changing developments brought on by the Covid-19 outbreak,” the CTA and ATA say. “Trucks move all of the essential products Canadians and Americans depend upon, including all medical and sanitation supplies to combat the spread of this virus, emergency relief and food products, as well as the vital operating components and raw materials used to manufacture and process these essential products, the fuels that move them, and a multitude of inter-related critical items that support the functionality of the supply chain.”
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