Province adjusts regulations for truck drivers during pandemic crisis

The Government of Saskatchewan is temporarily modifying hours of service regulations for commercial truck drivers in response to COVID-19.

The exemption applies to the transportation of goods and supplies to meet immediate needs related to COVID-19:

article continues below

• medical supplies and equipment related to testing, diagnosis and treatment;

• supplies and equipment necessary for community safety and sanitation, such as masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, soap and disinfectants;

• food, paper products and other groceries for emergency restocking of distribution centres or stores;

• raw materials, such as paper, plastic or alcohol, required for the manufacture of medical supplies, sanitation items and safe distribution of groceries;

• fuel;

• equipment, supplies and people to establish and manage temporary housing, quarantine and isolation facilities;

• people designated by Federal, Provincial/Territorial or local authorities for medical, isolation, or quarantine purposes; and

• people needed to provide other medical or emergency services.

Under the exemption period, it is still recommended carriers track their driver’s operation.

Drivers are encouraged to monitor their own ability and level of alertness to prevent driving while impaired by fatigue.  Once a driver determines their ability to operate safely has been reduced, they must take the appropriate measures to get adequate rest. It is recommended drivers take a break of 24 hours after 14 continuous days of work.

At the conclusion of the emergency period and prior to returning to normal operations, the driver is required to take eight consecutive hours off duty before driving.

As truck drivers are essential to the movement of goods they are exempt from the 14-day isolation period after returning to Saskatchewan.

However, drivers are asked to:

• practice proactive hygiene including handwashing;

• adhere to social distancing (maintain a distance of two metres from others);

• closely self-monitor; and

• self-isolate should they exhibit any symptoms.