The Saskatchewan Trucking Association is renewing its call for Transport Canada to mandate electronic logging books in the wake of non-compliance charges being levied against the owner of the trucking company involved in the Humboldt Broncos bus tragedy.
Adesh Deol Trucking owner Sukhmander Singh faces eight charges related to non-compliance with federal and provincial safety regulations, including two counts of failing to maintain logs for drivers’ hours and two counts of having more than one daily log.
One of his trucks, driven by Jaskirat Singh Sidhu, was involved in the April 6 crash near Melfort that killed 16 members of the Humboldt Broncos organization and injured 13 others.
Saskatchewan Trucking Association Executive Director Susan Ewart told 650 CKOM on Thursday non-compliance charges aren’t common, but they should be.
“This is where companies see a lot of issues. Hours of service, log book violations and safety violations,” she said.
“It’s a small minority of non-compliant trucking companies that put a blemish on the industry.”
She said the non-compliance can come from an effort to make deliveries and cover more ground, but it ends up compromising safety.
“We need enforcement,” she said. “At the end of the day, it’s not okay to cheat to get ahead.”
Ewart called the ‘dual-log’ charge Singh is facing, a tactic that can be used to fib about how long a driver has been out on the road.
She said it’s another example of why Transport Canada should mandate an electronic logging system for trucking companies.
The technology can be hardwired into a truck’s cab, keeping track of how long it has been on the road and with which driver. A secondary system would be located at the company’s offices for further tracking of their driver’s hours.
“You can’t tamper with (an electronic log),” she said, noting drivers should be in favour of the digital logs since it would keep their shifts from going too long.
Overall, Ewart said she hopes the charges serve as a wakeup call to trucking companies that are still non-compliant to regulations.
“It is unfortunate that something this tragic had to happen in order to make changes,” she said.