More wheels, more money for truckers
Changes mean fewer runs, lower costs
The provincial government recently approved new trucking regulations, and people in the lumber industry are excited about the changes.
The quad axle — a fourth set of tires on a trailer — has been allowed on roads in other parts of Canada, and is now permitted in Newfoundland and Labrador.
Kevin Sexton, with Sexton Lumber in Bloomfield, says the new rule means their trucks will be able to handle five to six extra tonnes per load, trimming the company's costs by approximately $1 million a year.
"It's good news for the sawmills, it's good news for the pulp mill, everybody in the forest industry, because now we can reduce our cost, and that's the name of the game today," Sexton said.
However, Sexton said the news is somewhat bittersweet for him because after two years of pushing the province for the change, he bought six new quad axle trailers in anticipation.
But Sexton said he was told this winter that it would be years before any changes were going to come, so he ripped out the extra axle on his new trailers, just before the government quietly changed the regulations last week.
"That's the bad side of it for us — we had some of those trailers, and we weren't informed that they were very close on approving this," he said.
"If we had known, I guess we probably would have held on, and had these trailers to use today."
However, he said that the change is positive, despite his bad luck.
"It's good news for the environment. It's that much less exhaust fumes and gases and diesel being burnt, so it's positive all the way round."
Service NL said the changes are so new they haven't approved any permits yet, so it will be some time before the new trailers will be on the road.