Last November, I wrote an article called Smokey Bear lies in wait about our uniformed friends at the Ministry of Transportation who are basically equipment safety cops for commercial trucks. Well, these Smokey Bears are still watching you, Mr. Contractor, ready to fine you if your vehicle is not compliant with regulations; and if you are totally out of line with regulations, they’re going to confiscate your vehicle.
A few days ago, I saw an unlucky home service vehicle and crew pulled over at the side of the road near Whitby. They had been caught in the bear’s trap. After inspection, it was simply how fast the tow truck would arrive. They were on their way to a moving job at a homeowner’s home, no different than any electrician, home renovator or anyone else going to a job. Suddenly they’re unemployed and, who knows, could possibly lose the job they thought they would be getting paid for that night. Not a great way to build a reputation.
No matter what province you are reading this in, Ministry of Transportation or Department of Transportation inspectors have a pretty simple job. They are looking to pull people over and inspect their vehicles and trailers for infractions right down to missing license stickers. Don’t think these fines are minor, either. One of our CARAHS members got pulled over in Toronto recently. A sticker missing on his trailer, the reason for him being pulled over, lead to a total of $3,000 in total fines. Ouch!
The requirements on commercial vehicles relating to the construction industry can also apply to parking, safety inspections, licensing and safe operating of vehicles, as well as record keeping and documentation related to these vehicles.
I say to everyone, be aware of the appearance of your vehicle when you drive by an MTC inspector’s vehicle. Keep everything mechanical fit and sound, from your tires to your lights to your windshield. Don’t drive with expired stickers. With Smokey Bear, as with the police, you won’t get a second chance to make a first impression.
CARAHS is a non profit organization for self employed home renovators and home services – EDUCATION – TRAINING – BENEFITS- We now have over 68 online education/safety courses at: www.carahs.org
Toll Free 1-866-366-2930