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Friday, December 22, 2006

Federal Transport Minister Replies to MCC’s Letter Regarding Hours of Service Implementation Date Fiasco

Back in November, much confusion ensued as a result of several provinces saying publicly they wouldn’t be ready to implement their new provincial hours of service regulations on January 1, 2007 as previously committed. This raised questions as to whether the federal regulation would be implemented on January 1st or not.

We cracked off a terse letter to the President of CCMTA, (c. c. to the Federal Minister of Transport, Lawrence Cannon) criticizing the guilty provinces for provoking this confusion and for not meeting the same deadline they had told and expected the carrier industry to meet. We didn’t receive a reply from CCMTA; however, we did receive a response from the Transport Minister.

The Minster said, “I share your disappointment that a number of provinces will not be able to amend their intra-provincial regulations in order to match the coming-in-to-force date for the federal regulations of January 1, 2007.” He added, “I am aware of the significant effort that Canada’s bus industry has undertaken through its participation in discussion on the rules, as well as the extent to which MCC has trained its member companies on the revised regime.” With respect to our criticism of Alberta’s decision to hold further public consultation, the Minister said, “I agree that this direction is not consistent with the national effort”.

HOS Delays Cause Enforcement Rift Among Provinces


OTTAWA -- Varying hours-of-service implementation dates among the provinces could create an uneven playing field in more than one jurisdiction across Canada, truckers warn.

Despite assurances over the last year of a national roll-out date of the new HOS rule, only three provinces -- Ontario, PEI, and Newfoundland -- have so far enshrined provincial versions of the federal regulation and are to be ready to implement it on Jan. 1, 2007.

Carriers in those provinces -- both federally regulated and intraprovincial -- will have to abide by the new rules on Jan. 1.

Furthermore, those carriers will have to comply with the new regulations even when operating in non-compliant provinces. Many are concerned this will create an two-tiered environment where carriers from provinces enforcing the new more restrictive rules will be disadvantaged compared to carriers domiciled in the other provinces.

Cracks in the HOS implementation process has led to some provinces enforcing the rules while others won't until later in '07

According to a communiqué issued to stakeholders by the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators, all federally regulated carriers and drivers will be required to comply with the new regulations as of the first day of January, but that presents some enforcement challenges.

In jurisdictions that haven't yet adopted the new rule, the statutes won't exist to lay charges under the new rules.

In cases of severe violations, enforcement action consisting of warnings up to and including out-of-service declarations will be taken at roadside and during facility audits to ensure road safety, CCMTA indicated.

But in the other seven provinces where the start of the new rule is delayed until March or April (see list of implementation dates at bottom of the page), actual enforcement might not begin until July 1.

There will be a period of soft or educational enforcement lasting until June 30 where carriers and drivers stopped at roadside will be provided with feedback and the required information to help understand and comply with the new regulations.

Various jurisdictions will gain enforcement power as they implement the rules, but probably can only enforce the old rules -- or write warnings under the new rules, a source tells Today's Trucking.

The list of provinces' targeted implementation dates of the new rule are as follows:

·         BC -- March 1, 2007

·         AB -- TBD, provincial consultations under way

·         SK -- April 1, 2007

·         MB -- March 1, 2007

·         ON -- January 1, 2007

·         QC -- March 1, 2007

·         NB -- March 1, 2007

·         NS -- February 1, 2007

·         PE -- January 1, 2007

·         NL -- January 1, 2007

·         NT -- April 1, 2007

·         YT -- February 1, 2007

These dates are approximate

© 2006 Newcom Business Media Inc

Ontario Marks New Year With New HoS Rules

By James Menzies; Truck News, 12/28/2006

TORONTO, Ont. -- While several provinces will hold off adopting the new federal Hours-of-Service rules, Ontario will be implementing the new rules on January 1, the province has confirmed.

Drivers who run interprovincially as well as those who operate strictly within Ontario will have to comply with the new rules beginning Monday. No charges can be laid under the current HoS regulations, as they will be repealed on Jan. 1.

The Ontario Trucking Association (OTA) says an enforcement strategy has been developed, which will be posted for OTA members on its Web site. The enforcement strategy has not yet been publicized, but the province is expected to focus on “educational enforcement” until June 30, 2007.

Drivers should know that if they are in violation of the current rules, they will most likely also be violating the new Hours-of-Service rules and charges may be laid. Drivers will also be charged if they fail to carry a log, falsify a log or use more than one logbook. Existing logbooks will be acceptable, provided drivers jot down the location of their home terminal as well as the cycle they are operating on.

The OTA reports the Ministry of Transportation will allow a driver to be on-duty more than 60 hours in seven days and 70 hours in eight days, by using the 70 hours in seven days provision in the new rules. Drivers can also use the 36-hour reset provision.

Drivers caught driving 16 hours after coming on-duty will be placed out-of-service by the MTO, but no charges will be laid during the educational enforcement period.

In April, 2007 the MTO plans to fully enforce the new regulations, with the exception of the requirement for a carrier to keep a record of the driver’s duty status for drivers that operate within 160 Km. That rule will be enforced when the MTO moves to full enforcement July 1, 2007.

Outside Ontario, there are various implementation strategies. PEI and Newfoundland are following Ontario’s steps and enforcing the new rules beginning Monday. The other provinces will enforce the new rules: Feb. 1 in Nova Scotia and the Yukon; March 1 in B.C., Manitoba, New Brunswick and Quebec; Apr. 1 in Saskatchewan and the Northwest Territories; and at a date to be determined in Alberta.


Added by DDL: Click here for Ontario HOS Regulations.

© 2007 Business Information Group

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