Based on the condition of the trucks pulled over by police in Burnaby this year, the industry “still has a lot of work to do” to protect the public from unsafe commercial vehicles rolling through the city, according to the officer who heads up local enforcement.
“There are still a lot of concerning and dangerous things we’re coming across on a daily basis,” Burnaby RCMP Const. Kevin Connolly told the NOW.
Police were at the bottom of Royal Oak Avenue near Deer Lake Park earlier this month and pulled over a couple such vehicles.
Royal Oak isn’t a truck route, but truckers who don’t educate themselves about which roads they’re allowed to be on end up on the steep hill because they are following GPS directions, according to Connolly.
Leaking diesel tanker
One vehicle that shouldn’t have been there was a tanker truck hauling diesel.
“It was actively leaking while we were doing our inspection to the point that we had a pool of diesel fuel on the road,” Connolly said.
Police learned the driver knew about the leak and had reported it to his boss, according to Connolly.
“Together they made the determination that it was fine to finish out their day and then that leak would be addressed,” Connolly said.
Connolly explained that tanker trucks are designed to mitigate danger in case of a crash or fire, but a leak compromises that protection.
“The fire would just latch on to that leak, and the whole system would catch fire and eventually erupt,” he said.
The tanker was taken out of service and the driver issued a number of violation tickets.
4,000 kilograms too heavy
Another vehicle police took off the road was a box truck hauling bottles of fish oil.
Besides being well over its gross vehicle weight, thereby nullifying its insurance, it was also carrying too much weight for its axle rating, according to Connolly.
“When we weighed it, we found out it was over 4,000 kilograms over what its axles were designed to handle,” he said.
The load also hadn’t been secured properly, according to Connolly, and the truck wasn’t even equipped with the appropriate straps.
“If the driver were to take a hard turn, there’s nothing preventing all that cargo in the back from shifting to that one side potential causing it, in that hard turn, to flip on its side,” Connolly said.
The driver was ticketed, and police kept the truck at the scene until the extra weight was unloaded and the remaining load secured.
The company had to send a second truck to pick up the extra fish oil.
The driver was issued nearly $2,000 in violation tickets, and the truck was ordered to an inspection facility to check out the state of its axles.
More enforcement this year
Of the 55 trucks police checked on Royal Oak on Nov. 8, 36 were taken out of service for safety violations. All told, officers handed out 107 violation tickets.
Connolly said Burnaby RCMP is on track to complete more enforcement actions and check more trucks this year than ever before.
Since Jan. 1, there have been 29 enforcements in Burnaby, resulting in 815 inspections and 565 unsafe trucks taken out of service.