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Enhanced chain-up regulations are now in place for commercial vehicle operators

VICTORIA, B.C. – The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure implemented stricter chain-up regulations for commercial vehicle operators to improve vehicle performance during winter conditions which will keep B.C. highways safer.

The Ministry recognizes the short notice the commercial vehicle industry is being given and will balance safety and reliability with giving the industry time to adjust its practices to the new regulations.

Commercial vehicle safety and enforcement officers will provide information and education to drivers over the coming months before stricter fines are implemented and enforced later this winter. The values of the escalating fines for non-compliance are being evaluated and considered. Previously, drivers faced a base-level fine of $121 for not carrying chains or not installing them when required to do so.

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Previous regulations required vehicles over 27,000 kilograms to carry and use traction devices, with only one wheel needing chains during winter conditions and mandatory chain-ups.  The new, more all-encompassing enhancements clarify requirements for all commercial vehicles over 5,000 kilograms:

* Vehicles less than 11,794 kilograms – like buses or five-ton trucks – must use chains on a minimum of two tires and can use steel chains, cable chains, automatic chains, socks or wheel sanders, if not equipped with winter tires.

* Vehicles 11,794 kilograms or more must use steel chains, and the number of tires needing chains ranges from a minimum of two tires for vehicles without a trailer, to six tires on some larger and more-demanding configurations.

“Last winter, 33 of 35 extended closures on the Coquihalla involved commercial vehicles, and in most cases, this was due to truck drivers either poorly installing chains or not using them at all,” said Claire Trevena, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “While most drivers do chain up during winter weather, these new regulations and the stricter fines that will follow will improve safety and hopefully reduce the number of closures.”

For more information on the chain-up regulations and fines; CLICK HERE

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