Next week, we should be hearing from the province about new mandatory training required for commercial truck drivers.
Consulting trucking and training industries and other stakeholders, SGI and the province plan to announce the plan next week.
There has been concern from companies about this making it more difficult to recruit new drivers, but calls for mandatory training have been made for years, with even more coming in response to the Humboldt Broncos bus crash this past April.
Although there are tests to obtain a commercial license, that only includes;
- Basic knowledge exam
- Sign exam
- Endorsement exam(s)
- Vision test
- Pre-trip inspection (a circle check vehicle inspection to show vehicle safety knowledge and check the equipment’s operation and condition. The learner is responsible to point out and name the item or equipment inspected without any help. Both this and the road test are done in a vehicle that the learner provides which someone licensed to drive that vehicle class can drive it there or come with a supervising driver).
It is also recommended, not required, that someone has previous driving experience before these tests. Approximately 90 percent of people do have previous experience.
"Since July [of 2017] we've been looking at improving our training program and we are recommending a seventy hour minimum training course before someone challenges a Class 1 road test and that would include in yard and in class and in-cab hours," explained Shpack, the Director of Driver Development and Safety Services with SGI.
More details of the new training will hopefully be released with the announcement next week.