The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure is reviewing oversize-load pilot car requirements to introduce new changes for the vehicles on provincial highways.
The proposed new requirements are based on factors such as severity, exposure and frequency of pilot cars on BC Highways.
“The analysis looked at how oversize commercial vehicles/loads fit in their lanes and at what dimensions they may encroach into other lanes, creating increased risk for other road users and infrastructure,” said Nicole Hilborne Policy Advisor, Commercial Transport, for the ministry.
She recently wrote to the district, seeking its comments on the proposed changes.
Three changes have been proposed.
MOTI plans to move away from requirements for daytime and darkness for oversize loads, and is now focusing on the differences between travel on two-lane highways vs multi-lane highways.
With that in mind, there are plans to reduce requirements for specific loads.
For loads that are long and not very wide, pilot car requirements could be slightly relaxed, especially on multi-lane highways.
Expanded travel windows are also proposed.
In BC, very large loads have historically been allowed to move only at night.
Engineering analysis did not support moving to daytime travel for larger loads, as is done in Alberta, primarily because of traffic on B.C.’s road network.
However, there is consideration to slightly expand the night-time hours for travel on provincial highways to allow those loads to move more smoothly across the province.
BC government would move forward cautiously on the changes, Hilborne told the district.