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Trucker training memo from Saskatchewan Crown insurer at odds with province

April 27, 2018   by The Canadian Press

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Photo copyright: Saskatchewan government says no decision has been made to implement mandatory training for truck-trailer drivers, despite a memo from its Crown insurance company that says a plan will be in place by next year.

Jim Billington, the press secretary for Premier Scott Moe, says in a statement that Saskatchewan Government Insurance sent an internal bulletin to driver instructors on April 25 about the possibility of introducing standardized training for Class 1 drivers.

Billington confirms that SGI and the government have been in consultation with the industry since last July, but a decision has not been made on standardized training, although talks continue on the curriculum and required hours.

The SGI memo says the spotlight has been on driver training and testing since the April 6 bus-truck crash involving the Humboldt Broncos junior hockey team, which killed 16 people and injured 13 others.

It says the agency, in collaboration with the province, will work toward mandatory training with a commitment to have a plan in place by early 2019 and full implementation to follow soon after.

The memo also says under the proposed scenario, a driver would no longer be able to challenge the road test to become a Class 1 driver unless they have completed mandatory training at a recognized school first.

Ontario is currently the only province that has mandatory truck driver training consisting of 103.5 hours.

On Thursday, the Manitoba government said it’s looking at implementing a standardized system of training and certification for commercial truck drivers.

The province said in a release that such a system would allow for a uniform standard for all truck drivers in the province and would allow road safety to be the number one priority in issuing licences.

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This story was originally published by Canadian Insurance Top Broker.