The British Columbia government is stepping up penalties for truckers who crash into highway overpasses after a rash of such incidents in recent years.
Transportation Minister Rob Fleming says the province will implement escalating penalties for companies and drivers with repeat offences, adding longer suspensions and the possible loss of their operating certificate.
Fleming says the province has used unprecedented penalties with recent offenders, including suspending one company’s entire fleet while investigators look into a crash involving one of its drivers.
The changes include the requirement for dump-style vehicles to have in-cab warning devices by next June, telling drivers their trailer hasn’t been lowered, and over-height vehicle fines will increase to $575, up from $115.
BC Trucking Association president and CEO Dave Earle says in a statement that his organization supports the tougher penalties, as they “mark a pivotal step toward creating safer roadways.”
Provincial statistics say as many as 30 bridge strikes have happened on British Columbia’s highways since 2021, with 16 of them reported last year alone.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 14, 2023.