This cargo container was knocked off a truck that failed to judge the clearance under the Glover overpass on Hwy. 1 in Langley. Dan Ferguson Langley Times

Calls for better truck driver training after overpass crash blocks B.C. highway

Trucking association president says some schools aren’t fully training drivers

The number of collisions where semi-trailer trucks fail to clear overpasses shows the need for better training, said David Earle, the president and CEO of the Langley-based B.C. Trucking Association (BCTA).

Earle was reacting to a pair of incidents where the Glover Road overpass on Hwy. 1 through Langley was hit twice in less than 14 hours, once on Monday afternoon and again on Tuesday morning.

There was no serious damage or injuries reported in either accident, but eastbound traffic was backed up for several hours on Tuesday while crews worked to remove a damaged cargo container that was knocked off a truck in the collision.

READ MORE: Langley Hwy. 1 overpass hit twice in less than 24 hours

Earle noted the Langley incidents are only the latest where trucks have have hit overpasses.

In South Surrey, when an overheight vehicle hit the 152 Street overpass on Hwy. 99 late last year, the crossing was restricted to southbound traffic only for three months – causing frustration for commuters and area businesses alike.

Highway 99 traffic was also limited to northbound traffic while repairs were being done.

In West Vancouver last summer, two lanes of Taylor Way were closed after a crane truck hit an overpass at the Park Royal Shopping Centre.

There have been several other incidents involving vehicles hitting overpasses in Langley as well.

READ MORE: Semi hits railway overpass at Glover Road

People have asked him why a truck driver wouldn’t know how tall their vehicle was, Earle said.

“It’s not intuitive,” Earle said.

“You have to be trained how to figure it out.”

Earle said the problem is, some driver training schools are teaching people just enough to pass the test to operate a large rig.

“There are no mandatory entry-level standards (for training),” Earle said.

“There’s something we have to do better.”

Passing the test isn’t enough, Earle said, because it doesn’t require drivers to master essential skills.

While some schools do a good job of producing well-trained drivers, others do not, and the result is some heavy truck operators are ill-prepared for anything other than ideal driving conditions, Earle said.

The good news is the provincial government and ICBC are looking to improve training standards.

“They’re (the province) engaged in the issue, ICBC is engaged in the issue,” Earle said.

“We are very optimistic (something will be done).”

The BCTA is a non-profit association founded in 1913 to advance the interests of British Columbia motor carriers.

Members operate about 14,000 vehicles, employing over 26,000 people and generate an estimated $2 billion a year in revenues.

They include for-hire and private carriers hauling every kind of freight including manufactured goods, bulk products, household goods and general freight.

The association also represents motor coach, courier, and waste management companies and suppliers.



dan.ferguson@langleytimes.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

David Earle, the president and CEO of the Langley-based B.C. Trucking Association (BCTA) says the overpass collisions show better training is needed. Supplied.

Just Posted

Ladysmith Arts Council awarded $20K to develop public art strategy

The Arts Council of Ladysmith and District has been given $20,000 by… Continue reading

B.C. declares state of emergency as more than 560 wildfires rage

This is only the fourth state of emergency ever issued during a fire season

Naloxone workshop in Chemainus gives people the tools to deal with an overdose situation

Community paramedic provides valuable information amid growing opioid crisis

Police, muni on site of break-in at pump station

Investigation being conducted but no public safety concern, officer says

Happy birthday Boler: An anniversary gathering of the cutest campers in Winnipeg

Hundreds of the unique trailers in Winnipeg to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Manitoba invention

Canada’s tax system unfairly favours wealthy, poll of CRA auditors suggests

Four of every five respondents think loopholes and tax credits built into the system benefit the rich

Banff’s Sunshine ski resort upset with proposed guidelines from Parks Canada

The plan would allow for more visitors but wouldn’t let Sunshine build additional facilities

Conditions improve for battling northwest B.C. wildfires, minister says

‘Self-evacuated’ people fleeing smoke advised to go home

UPDATED: B.C. matching Red Cross donations for victims of wildfires

Donations being taken by many organizations, BC Hydro waiving bills

Woodpecker goes out with a bang, starts grassfire in B.C. city

Untimely death of woodpecker causes power outage in Cawston

Communities on evacuation alert in many areas of B.C. as wildfires flare

Warning was issued for 583-square-kilometre blaze that has charred Fraser Lake to Fort St. James

UPDATE: Kelowna’s crying judge refuses to pull herself from case

Judge Monica McParland won’t pull herself off of case.

Most Read