B.C. suspends Chohan Freight Forwarders’ safety certificate pending investigation

B.C. suspends Chohan Freight Forwarders' safety certificate

B.C. suspends Chohan Freight Forwarders’ safety certificate. British Columbia’s Transportation Minister has pledged to impose severe penalties. An incident where a truck, believed to be carrying heavy construction material, collided with an overpass in Delta, B.C. The crash led to the closure of the southbound lanes of Highway 99. The incident resulted in a secondary accident involving another vehicle, with one person reported to have been taken to the hospital in stable condition.

This collision is part of a series of overpass incidents that prompted the province to announce stricter penalties for companies and drivers with repeat offenses earlier this month. Transportation Minister Rob Fleming expressed his concern, stating, “This needs to stop.” He acknowledged that most commercial drivers in B.C. operate safely but emphasized that some operators are not heeding the safety message.

In response to the recent collision, B.C.’s Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement branch suspended the safety certificate for Chohan Freight Forwarders Ltd., based in Aldergrove. The suspension affects the company’s entire fleet of 65 commercial vehicles, prohibiting them from operating in B.C. as of 4:30 p.m. Friday. The suspension is pending the outcome of an investigation.

Collisions past two years

Fleming highlighted that Chohan trucks have been involved in six overpass collisions in the past two years, contributing to nearly one-fifth of the province’s 31 recorded overpass crashes since December 2021. The suspension is attributed to the company’s perceived failure to operate safely within the province.

“The driver and the carrier responsible will face the toughest fines in the country,” warned Fleming, adding that the investigation could lead to further actions. Chohan Freight Forwarders, in a statement to CBC News, attributed the crash to driver error and clarified that the driver involved was not an employee but an owner-operator. The company claimed to follow all safety protocols and is cooperating with investigating agencies.

As the province grapples with a concerning trend of overpass collisions, the government’s commitment to implementing stringent penalties reflects its determination to address safety issues within the commercial transportation sector. The outcome of the investigation into this latest incident will likely have implications for both the driver and the company involved.

Sumann Senguptaa

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