Date Posted

November 26, 2021

BCTA stresses the best resource for real time specifics will always be Drive BC (www.drivebc.ca ). They will NOT be providing notice of real-time highway conditions as their provincial government is best positioned to do this.

Highway 1 – Reopened through the Fraser Valley (but remains closed in Fraser Canyon)

Highway 1 will reopen through the Fraser Valley between Chilliwack and Abbotsford at 2 p.m. (Pacific time), Thursday, Nov. 25, following cleanup, repairs and geotechnical assessments of the highway and its structures.

This reopening will help connect the Lower Mainland through to Highway 3 and the Interior. While this will help to reduce congestion on Highway 7, travel restrictions will remain in place on Highway 7 to ensure the safe movement of essential goods and services

Although it is not subject to the essential travel order, people are asked to stay off Highway 1 through Abbotsford unless necessary. Drivers can expect slow traffic with reduced speed limits. When the highway reopens, the interchange at No. 3 Road will not be accessible due to closures on the municipal road network

Commercial vehicles over 63,500 kilograms are prohibited from travelling on Highway 1 between Abbotsford and Chilliwack at this time

Highway 1 Fraser Canyon remains closed from Boothroyd through to Spences Bridge – damage assessments are ongoing. At this time there is no ETA on reopening.

Special Weather Advisor

Environment and Climate Change Canada has issued a special weather statements in effect for Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Squamish to Whistler and the Sunshine Coast from now into next week. Flood conditions may arise in the areas over the period of these storms. The River Forecast Centre has issued high streamflow advisories for all regions of the Coast

Environment and Climate Change Canada has also issued a special weather statement in effect (winter storm warming) for Highway 3 – Paulson Summit to Kootenay Pass, with snowfall accumulation of 30 to 40 cm.

 

It is critical that carriers ensure their drivers are well stocked on supplies, fuel and chains to travel these roads

which is expected to be very slow moving with multiple stoppages to allow for movement of emergency vehicles.

 

We can’t stress it enough, please tell your drivers to obey all posted speed signs and drive with an abundance of caution

as this will be the first time for many commercial drivers will be navigating Highway 3 and the supporting connectors.

Tires and chains regulations in BC

 

Government of BC’s tire and chain regulations, which mandate placement of chains based on vehicle configuration, can be found here.

Drivers must obey winter tire and chain signs throughout the province from October 1 to April 30. For select highways not located through mountain passes and/or high snowfall areas, tire and chain requirements end March 31.

City of Abbotsford Truck Route Detour

With Highway 11 closed to all traffic between Downes Road and McCallum Road, the City of Abbotsford is advising heavy truck drivers to use Mt Lehman Road and Harris Road as the alternate temporary truck route.

Please have drivers refrain from using Gladwin Road as intersections along this route are not wide enough for truck turning movements at intersections and traffic backups are occurring.

This temporary truck route is preferred for both entry and exit purposes to the City from the east for the foreseeable future.

A map of this detour can be found on the City Abbotsford’s site found here .

Federal EI Relief

The Government of Canada has approved a Request for Federal Assistance from the Province of British Columbia to help with their response to extreme flooding in the province.

The impact of the flooding is widespread, including in multiple Indigenous communities, and the emergency response is complex, requiring cooperation across all layers of government.

In recognition of the significant, immediate challenges, the federal government is waiting normal EI rules for those directly impacted by the flood, including those that normally would not qualify for EI.

This include waiving the requirement to show a record of employment, recognizing that it may be difficult for many to obtain proper documentation under the circumstances.

Details on the federal financial relief program, can be found here.

Commercial Drivers/Power Units

If you have commercial drivers, and/or power units that are available to provide support to other carriers that are supporting relief efforts, please email LevanaH@bctrucking.com

In your email to Levana, please advise the following:

  • What is resources available (e.g., # commercial class 1 driver and/or power unit)
  • Where the resources are currently located (e.g., Coquitlam, Kelowna, Kamloops, Surrey, etc.)
  • What the available resources are available for (e.g., local transportation only/160km from home terminal, provincial long haul only, Canada long haul, Canada/US long haul).

FMCSA Provides Additional Reg Exemptions to Canadian Carriers in Aftermath BC Flooding and Road Closures

The US Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has issued a Regional Emergency Declaration to facilitate movement of Canadian goods through the United States to bypass road closures and areas in Canada cut-off by flooding and landslides.

This declaration complements recent changes made to the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in-transit program (included below, CBSA and CBP Joint Update, issued November 22, 2021) and will allow additional options for Canadian carriers and drivers in re-establishing key supply chain links to British Columbia and Western Canada.

The declaration provides an exemption from certain regulatory requirements in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety (FMCSRs) and is limited to Canadian motor carriers and drivers providing emergency services or transporting essential goods, supplies and equipment from Canada to other points in Canada through to bypass road closures and areas in Canada cut off by flooding and landslides

The declaration, as written, can be broadly interpreted. BCTA, through CTA is working with governments to seek additional guidance and applicability to Canadian trucking operations.

Key highlights of the regulatory relief provided by FMCSA include:

  • The ability for Canadian trucking companies and drivers (holding class 1, 2 and 3 licences) to operate from Canada to other points in Canada through the United States without a US DOT#, provided they hold a valid National Safety Code (NSC) certificate number issued by the appropriate authority in the base jurisdiction and a proof of registration in Canada have not been assigned a Conditional or Unsatisfactory safety rating by their base jurisdiction.
  • That FMCSA will not enforce specific parts of the Drug and Alcohol Testing Regime and Clearing House.

Carriers are encouraged to carefully review the full details of the FMCSA declaration and the Notice of Enforcement Discretion to determine and its suitability to their operations.

For full details of the Regional Emergency Declaration click here and the Notice of Enforcement Discretion click here.

Not included in the regulatory relief were considerations for domestic Canadian Weights and Dimensions to be allowed during In-Transit movements. BCTA thanks CTA who has prepared a document to serve as a basic guide to assist carriers in this area which can be found by  here.

Options for additional relief from the International Registration Plan (IRP), International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) and FAST / TWIC requirements for the movement of Dangerous Goods are still being considered by governments.

If you have questions on this declaration, please do not hesitate to reach out to your BCA office.

CBSA AND CBP JOINT UPDATED EMERGENCY PROTOCOLS IN RESPONSE TO FLOOD SITUATION IN BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA

November 22, 2021

Due to extreme weather conditions in British Columbia, Canada that have caused flooding, landslides, road closures, and other supply chain disruptions, Canadian domestic truck carriers may need to transit through the U.S to reach destinations in Canada. Any Canadian carriers that currently operate between the U.S. and Canada as well as domestically are encouraged to follow the standard procedures for transit, including the advance filing of an electronic truck manifest and utilization of an in-bond or in-transit transaction. This will facilitate crossing and decrease delay at the border that will be caused by these temporary measures.

The requirements below are designed to be utilized by Canadian domestic truck carriers that don’t normally cross the border in the normal course of their business as well as providing some guidance to international carriers carrying Canadian domestic shipments during the duration of these procedures.

  • All equipment, trailers and containers moving under these procedures must be sealed at or before arrival at the U.S. border.  These seals should be clearly identified to CBP and CBSA for verification and inspection as necessary.
  • Any Canadian carriers that currently operate between the U.S. and Canada as well as domestically are expected to follow the standard procedures for transit, including the advance filing of an electronic truck manifest and utilization of an in-bond or in-transit transaction. This applies to both rail and truck carriers.
  • This will facilitate crossing and decrease delay at the border that will be caused by these temporary measures.
  • If a carrier is using automated methods of transmission under these procedures, the data available for those shipments may not be the same as for cargo intended for import into the U.S.  To mitigate this, carriers should describe the merchandise in general (i.e. foodstuffs, groceries and other products destined to Canadian stores, moving through the U.S. due to flooding emergency).
  • For Transportation and Exportation (T&E type 62) in-bond shipments filed electronically and moving under these procedures, the general description above applies and 9804.00 may be used for the required HTSUS number and value should be estimated based on shipping valuation.  If necessary and no values are known, $2 (USD) per pound may be used for this process.
  • CBP will exercise maximum flexibility regarding these domestic freight shipments.  It is recommended that carriers have normal clearance documents readily available such as bill of lading, invoices, etc. to facilitate clearance.
  • Consolidated express carriers may file a single bill of lading electronically, as per the regulations, using a general description (i.e. consolidated express shipments destined to Canada moving in-transit through the U.S. due to the flooding emergency), under a single type 62 (T&E) in-bond as described above.
    • To facilitate crossing, express carriers should be prepared to provide a list of all individual shipments at the border. This information may be on paper and accompany the conveyance or may be sent to a specific port electronically based on arrangements between the carrier and the port of entry.

References:

For more information on United States Customs and Border Protection (USCBP) electronic manifesting and bonds, please see the following links: https://www.cbp.gov/document/technical-documentation/ace-bond-guide-electronic-truck-manifest  https://www.cbp.gov/document/guides/truck-manifest-create-manifest and https://www.cbp.gov/document/guides/truck-manifest-create-manifest-french

For more information on Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) requirements for in-transit movement of Canadian goods through U.S. territory can be found in Departmental Memorandum D3-4-2, Highway Pre-Arrival and Reporting Requirements, paragraphs 59-66.

The following guidelines for this special interim measure have been developed in consultation with various Industry Stakeholders, USCBP, and Other Government Departments within Canada and the United States to facilitate the movement of goods impacted by the current flooding situation in B.C. while also respecting the relevant laws and regulations that govern our joint CA-US border and national interests.

UNITED STATES CUSTOMS AND BORDER PROTECTION INTERIM SPECIAL MEASURES

General rules:

The following requirements are available to Canadian domestic truck carriers that do not have electronic manifesting capabilities or ability to file as a bonded carrier.

  • The area of operations will be initially limited to the following ports.
    • Emerson, MB (502) 373-2841 (Pembina, North Dakota 701-825-5800 );
    • North Portal, SK (602) 927-6285 (Portal Station, North Dakota 701-926-7500);
    • Coutts, AB (705) 344-3766 (Sweetgrass, Montana 406-335-9610);
    • Kingsgate, BC (818) 424-5391 (Eastport, Idaho 208-267-3966);
    • Osoyoos, BC (819) 495-7092 (Oroville, Washington 509-476-2955); and,
    • PAC Highway B.C. (813) 1-800-461-9999 (Blaine, Washington 360-332-5771)
  • For in-transit delays, such as a breakdown during transit, the carriers shall contact the nearest CBP port of entry
  • Expected duration of the following work around measures will be for the duration of the infrastructure delays or up to thirty days and re-evaluated once commercial traffic normalizes or operationally resumes.
  • All protocols and policies apply to any port of entry outside of the affected area, i.e., Seattle Field Office.
  • Carriers and importers failure to follow stipulated workaround procedures may be subject to enforcement and compliance actions that may delay clearance. Note that CBP will exercise maximum flexibility to ensure that legitimate transactions are facilitated but need cooperation from the industry sector to ensure facilitation.

Travel Documents Requirements:

Entry filing/requirements:

  • Bond requirements for carriers within the containment area will be waived for non-traditional small time trucking companies.
  • User fee requirements will be adhered to, and fees will be collected.
  • CBP Officers will input the manifest information in ACE manually based on the submission of documents provided.

Container security/verification:

  • Containers must be properly sealed either prior to arrival or at the border. CBP personnel shall record and/or verify seal numbers upon entry ports of entry.
  • Carriers will not unload or load any additional cargo or break the seal on the container/trailer while in the US.
  • Upon arrival to the U.S. border CBP primary booth, identification and any documents including bills of lading, packing lists, invoices, foreign government certificates, etc. as well as trailer license number will be provided to the CBP Officer and/or agriculture specialist.
  • Upon re-entering Canada, carriers transiting under this procedure will present themselves to CBSA personnel for verification of seals and collection of seal numbers and provide supporting documentation used for entry into the U.S. as well as driver identification.

Prohibited/restricted items:

  • Prohibited items currently legal in Canada, but not in the U.S. will not be authorized for movement under these procedures.
  • Restricted merchandise, such as medical equipment, pharmaceuticals, agriculture commodities, and live animals, may require further review by CBP personnel at the port of entry.  This may include additional documentation as mandated by the appropriate regulatory agency (USDA, FDA etc). Additional information is provided below.
    • FDA Prior Notice requirements:  To help support the current emergency situation, FDA and CBP will assist using enforcement discretion when there is no prior notice for articles of food carried by Canadian domestic truck carriers transiting through the U.S. to reach destinations in Canada as a result of supply chain disruptions in British Columbia, Canada at this time. Regulatory discretion as described in FDA Compliance Policy Guide, Section 110.310 for imported food arriving from and exiting to the same country should only be considered if all the general rules and requirements identified in this CSMS are met. Any Canadian carriers that currently operate between the U.S. and Canada as well as domestically are expected to follow the standard procedures for transit, including the timely submission of prior notice for imported foods to FDA.
    • U.S.DA In-Transit Permits:  Most in-transit plant and animal permits issued prior to movement, will not be required for shipments utilizing these temporary procedures.  CBP Agriculture Specialists at the port of arrival in the U.S. will make a risk-based determination on any additional measures needed to safeguard these shipments.

Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) Special Measures 

Food In-Transit 

  • Carriers must either follow Departmental Memorandum D3-4-2 or the Emergency Protocol described above for food. The CFIA does not require  certification documentation for the movement of food, including meat, eggs and raw milk. The goods do not have to be declared to the CFIA’s National Import Service Centre. The food must meet all conditions in the Safe Food for Canadian Regulations as if it was moved between provinces.

Livestock Movements

  • An animal welfare agreement between United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and CFIA that will allow for the emergency transit of live animals through the USA has been signed on November 18, 2021. This temporary measure allows for: 1) Emergency movement of animals outside of the flooded area through the U.S. in case it becomes necessary to evacuate and that all other Canadian roads are blocked or impaired, and 2) Travel of live animals from Alberta to slaughterhouses in B.C. due to a lack of capacity to slaughter those animals elsewhere.
  • Per the agreement, procedures will need to be put in place by CFIA and industry, including:
    • Animals must be inspected before loading and must be transported with an endorsed CFIA emergency transit Health Certificate with truck seal number(s) recorded on the certificate.  No USDA import transit permit will be required.
    • Every conveyance opening through which an animal could be moved in or out,  must have a CFIA seal applied to it before the truck leaves Canada.
    • When the truck arrives at the U.S. Port of Entry, USDA Port Personnel will verify the shipment has an endorsed Health Certificates, that the truck is properly sealed, and that the seals on the truck match what is documented on the endorsed health certificate.
    • Transporters must ensure they have a contingency transportation plan in case the truck hauling the transiting animals cannot complete the trip for any reason.
    • The CBSA will keep records of shipment re-entry so that CFIA and USDA can compare records to ensure all emergency transit shipments proceeded as intended.
    • Transporters may be required to follow a specified route through the United States.
  • This special agreement will end once Canadian roads are re-opened for traffic.
  • Companies must contact CFIA before organizing any shipment transiting through the USA.
  • CFIA is finalizing guidance documents for CFIA staff and industry, but the measures will be implemented as soon as possible.

COVID 19 HEALTH MEASURES

There is no change to existing guidance and communications regarding pandemic related matters.

Commercial drivers, as persons employed in the trade and transportation sector and crossing the border in this capacity, are considered under the existing provisions for truckers.

Pre-arrival testing, quarantine requirements and post arrival testing are not required for persons in the trade or transportation sector who is important for the movement of goods or people, including a truck driver or crew member on any aircraft, shipping vessel or train, who enters Canada for the purpose of performing their duties as a member of that sector.

 These temporary interim measures are subject to change and/or may be updated as the situation evolves. We will communicate further guidance and/or updates as applicable. 

Photo credit: BC Ministry of Transportation (www.flickr.com/photos/tranbc/with/51681484137/)


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