A pop-quiz of sorts was in store for any commercial truck drivers who drove through the Napanee corridor of Hwy 401 last week.
The quiz wasn’t a written one however, rather an examination of their vehicles to make sure they were meeting the province’s regulations both for safety and environmental impact.
Trucks were directed off the highway and into the parking lot of the Strathcona Paper Centre, where they were met by members of the OPP, Kingston Police Services, Ministry of Transportation and Ministry of the Environment.
Of the 30 vehicles inspected, nearly half were taken out of service for various reasons.
“We’re inspecting commercial vehicles for mechanical fitness and also for documentation and paperwork,” explained Mike Carr, enforcement supervisor with the Ministry of Transportation. “Hwy 401 is the busiest highway in the province of Ontario. The ministry estimates that close to 200,000 trucks travel per day on the 401. Based on what’s been going on the last couple of years, collisions and the catastrophic effect those collisions have, there’s an emphasis on enforcement.”
The inspection included making sure a truck’s load was properly secured, tires were in working order and their engines were meeting MOE regulations.
The MOE inspected six trucks, charging one driver under the Highway Traffic Act. The MTO conducted 17 inspections, taking eight out of service and pressing 11 charges. Kingston Police Services looked at three trucks, taking one out of service and laying one charge while the OPP did four inspections, taking two out of service and laying three charges.
Trucks that failed to meet safety requirements were pulled from the road and forced to make any necessary repairs before they were allowed back on the highway. Infractions could range from a warning to a ticket to having the vehicle’s plates pulled and charges laid.
“Preventative maintenance is a good practice for the operators to get into,” said Carr. “Us hosting these pop up blitzes throughout the province ensure drivers are doing their due diligence.”
Carr said they will continue to host similar checkpoints throughout the province with no advance warning.