To improve travel for commercial truck drivers, the Government of B.C. is funding the installation of portable toilets at several commercial vehicle pull-outs, inspection stations and chain-up locations throughout the province.
Commercial truck drivers play an important role in maintaining the supply chain by delivering essential goods during the COVID-19 pandemic. The drivers ensure people around the province continue to have access to the items they need, including food and medicine. This is why it is crucial that commercial truck drivers have safe and clean facilities.
Installation of the additional portable toilets began this past weekend, with completion over the coming weeks to provide more options for commercial drivers. Approximately 20 portable toilets have been installed at commercial pull-outs and inspection stations, and the Province will look at adding additional ones in the coming weeks.
The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure is also keeping all rest areas open during the outbreak to continue to support the trucking industry. Maintenance contractors are working to keep these facilities clean, sanitary and well supplied. If people encounter less than ideal conditions at any provincial rest area, they are encouraged to contact the appropriate maintenance contractor or nearest ministry office.
In order to make sure everyone in B.C. has access to the goods they need, the Province has created a new Provincial Supply Chain Coordination Unit to assist with co-ordinating the distribution of goods and services. The Province has also launched the COVID-19 Supply Hub, a made-in-B.C. online platform to co-ordinate, find and speed up the delivery of medical supplies and personal protective equipment for provincial health authorities to support front-line health workers.
Private industry is also stepping up to provide support for these essential transportation workers. Members of the BC Trucking Association have spearheaded the Meals for Truck Drivers BC pilot, setting up food trucks at various commercial cardlocks throughout the province. Restaurants such as Tim Hortons have reopened many locations along Canadian highways for take-out and restroom use for commercial drivers.
Vancouver radio station Red FM has contacted the ministry to fund the installation of additional portable toilets in Surrey and Delta to support the commercial vehicle industry. The ministry is working with Red FM to identify locations and co-ordinate installation this week.
The ministry is following the advice and orders of the provincial health officer and the federal government to keep British Columbians as safe as possible and help to stop the spread of COVID-19. While highways and roads remain open, the provincial health officer recommends people stay close to home and avoid any non-essential travel.
Written and released by BC Government