OTA Calls for Increase to Minimum Commercial Vehicle Liability Insurance

by Canadian Shipper

The Ontario Trucking Association is making a series of recommendations to the provincial government to update the Truck Transportation Act (TTA). The TTA came into force on January 30, 1989 ushering in the economic deregulation of intraprovincial trucking.

The association is recommending that the minimum statutory requirement of $one million of PL/PD coverage should be increased to $five million. OTA is also recommending that the requirement for operating authorities be maintained, arguing that the elimination of operating authorities and the resultant total reliance on CVOR would have a negative impact on safety and create a non-level playing field within the industry.

Without an operating authority, the notion of the “operative CVOR” would disappear and all any carrier, load broker or other business would have to do to avoid CVOR liabilities and sanctions would be to hire owner-operators with their own CVOR numbers.

The TTA, says the OTA, has achieved its goal of increasing competition and the array of services available to shippers. But the OTA maintains that much within the TTA is now of little relevance, constituting a needless drain on the administrative resources of MTO. There are many sections that have never been enforced, or that obviously do not accomplish their intended purpose, that could be repealed.

This includes such things as the load broker requirements, the owner driver licenses and single source operating authorities and the customs and immigration conditions (which are a federal responsibility).

However, OTA suggests that one requirement in particular be kept: that out-of-province carriers have an agent in Ontario, the conditions of carriage and the requirements for a bill of lading. It is likely that shippers would want to keep the requirements relating to cargo insurance. OTA would not oppose this but would want to see some quid pro quo in the form of shipper liability for payment to carriers in the event of non-payment by a load broker.

Finally, OTA believes the TTA should be amended to clarify what documents can be seized when a vehicle is stopped by an enforcement officer.

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