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

Okanagan’s smoke filled skies toxic to pets

Pet owners should take extra precautions with pets until smoke dissipates

New grandma wants a place on town council to improve Princeton for families

A Princeton woman has stepped forward and declared her intention to run… Continue reading

Smoke cancels Super League Penticton, organizers give pros a gift

Super League Penticton organizers decide to send all pro competitors to championship

Air support grounded as fires fill the skies with smoke

Heavy smoke throughout the region thwarted efforts of BC Wildfire Saturday, as… Continue reading

Evacuation alerts in place for south of Keremeos, Hedley and Princeton

More evacuation alerts - south of Keremeos - were issued Saturday afternoon… Continue reading

Canadians fear for relatives trapped amid flooding in Indian state of Kerala

More than 800,000people have been displaced by floods and landslides

IndyCar driver Wickens flown to hospital after scary crash

IndyCar said Wickens was awake and alert as he was taken to a hospital

Ex-BCTF president ‘undeterred’ after early release from pipeline protest jail term

Susan Lambert and Order of Canada recipient Jean Swanson released early

Air support grounded as fires fill the skies with smoke

Update Aug. 19 1:25 p.m. A majority of air support is still… Continue reading

Crews continue extinguish Snowy Mountain Wildfire

The 13,359 hectare wildfire is classified as held

Smoky skies means stay inside, according to Interior Health

The air quality in the Okanagan is considered a high risk

Flights from Kelowna International Airport affected by wildfire smoke

Passengers are being asked to check their flight’s status before arriving

Work continues on Monashee Complex wildfires

Crews will be assisted by helicopters if flying conditions improve

Most Read