Truck Speed Limiter Law Introduced in Ontario Legislature

(Toronto: March 19, 2008) – Major Step Forward for Safety and the Environment Says Ontario Trucking Association

It was nearly two and a half years ago that the Ontario Trucking Association first proposed the idea of mandating the activation of speed limiters on heavy trucks that operate into, out of and within the province, at a maximum speed of no more than 105 km/hr. So, the introduction of a bill today in the Ontario legislature by transportation minister, Jim Bradley, to do just that was welcomed by OTA, whose president, David Bradley (no relation to the transportation minister) called it “a significant step forward for highway safety and for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”

A speed limiter is an electronic microchip that has been installed on virtually every new heavy truck engine built since the mid-1990’s and when set, acts as a “speed governor.” The activation of speed limiters has been mandated in the European Union for well over a decade and, according to OTA, at least half of the trucks currently operating on Ontario’s highways have activated their speed limiters. Quebec passed similar legislation late last year and is expected to co-ordinate implementation with Ontario.

“It just makes sense,” says OTA’s Bradley. ”Not only is there a direct relationship between speed and the severity of crashes, but there is a direct pay-back in improved fuel efficiency from operating at lower speeds and that in turn reduces costs and GHG emissions.” OTA estimates substantive GHG emissions reductions perhaps on the order of 280 kilotonnes per year.

According to Bradley, “truck drivers are the least likely to be excessively speeding, but there are some who need to slow it down and this technology will allow us to do that without putting a further drain on police resources that would be better spent going after reckless motorists and criminals.”

“We acknowledge that there are some in the industry who oppose this measure, just like there were those who didn’t like being told they must use seat belts or motorcycle helmets, despite the obvious advantages,” he said. “However, in due course we are confident that they too will see the benefit, especially to their bottom line.”

The bill introduced today, is supported by a host of safety and environmental groups as well as police services.

Bradley said he anticipates all-party support for the bill and “urges the Ontario Legislature to pass this legislation without delay.”

U.S. Department of Transportation
Office of Public Affairs

Washington, D.C.
Thursday, January 31, 2008

BTS Releases North American Surface Trade Numbers for November 2007: Surface Trade with Canada and Mexico Rose 8.6 Percent from November 2006

Trade using surface transportation between the United States and its North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners Canada and Mexico was 8.6 percent higher in November 2007 than in November 2006, reaching $70.4 billion, the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS), a part of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA), reported today.

A news release and summary tables. More information on transborder freight data and data from previous months are posted on the BTS website.