As discouraged motorists keep on to deal with lengthy lineups at Quebec’s car insurance plan board (SAAQ), truck motorists are apprehensive that they will never be capable to leave the province occur April 1.
The provincial car insurance coverage board has been working with prolonged lineups at many of its assistance centres since introducing a new on line portal on Feb. 20, which customers have had trouble accessing because of to an authentication situation.
Richard Pellerin, a self-employed truck driver centered in the province’s Mauricie region, claimed that if he does not get his renewed registration he will have to park his rig. Truck drivers who transport items outside the house Quebec have to be registered under what is acknowledged as the International Registration System.
“This difficulty at the automobile insurance plan board affects us all, but specifically for our field, it really is definitely the registrations that immediately effect us, which expires on March 31 for all of us,” Pellerin claimed in an interview.
The new web-site was expected to streamline sure transactions, like renewing licences, spending registration and scheduling exams. But it has turned into a major humiliation for the board and for the Coalition Avenir Québec governing administration.
Quebec Transportation Minister Geneviève Guilbault this week reduce shorter a European journey so she could return household to offer with the foul-up, announcing a grace period for expired licences and other measures aimed at cutting down the backlog at support centres.
But Pellerin claimed Thursday he hasn’t viewed any indication that the problem is increasing for truckers. “I definitely have to have to have my intercontinental registration renewed in order for me to get the job done earlier March 31,” he stated. “Usually, my business will be shut down till I get that official doc.” Failure to have it renewed could price him $30,000 a thirty day period, he reported.
Francis Rouleau, govt director of the Affiliation des routiers professionnels du Québec, explained the 150 customers of his truckers affiliation are concerned they could be strike with fines if they travel exterior Quebec devoid of a renewal.
“As prolonged as the trouble persists at the board occur April 1, we will possibly have several drivers with road violations and fines who will be really upset, and it can be all thanks to a technical glitch,” Rouleau reported.
The system declared by Guilbault incorporates providing drivers whose licences expired in the last six months until finally June 1 to renew. Car registration certificates established to expire have been prolonged for an further 60 times. Motorists will also have far more time to sign up new vehicles bought at dealerships.
Also, the validity of foreign driver’s licences will be taken care of until finally Aug. 29, so newcomers can apply for a Quebec-based mostly licence later.
On Monday, the board explained it would be bringing in 150 extra personnel to its provider centres and would extend opening several hours. Need is significant mainly because Quebec motorists have to make a payment every 12 months to renew their licences. In New Brunswick, a driver’s licence is valid for four years, and the typical is 5 a long time in other provinces.
Guilbault, who frequented a services centre in Montreal on Friday, told reporters the preparing for the on-line portal’s start had been botched.
“The arranging do the job, as far as I’m concerned, was not nicely performed, which means that we finished up with queues that no a single appears to have anticipated, but there is also the interaction factor,” Guilbault said. “We possibly did not do plenty of, and we are understanding from that.”
The SAAQ did not respond to requests for remark on Thursday and Friday.
Guilbault stated the board is giving truckers and taxi drivers precedence. “Underneath no circumstance will I acknowledge that a trucker are unable to get the job done from March 31 or April 1 since he was not in a position to get service,” she said.
“What I have been explained to is that at this time, we are in a position to offer you service to truckers. We’re meeting with them on Monday and if I see you can find a issue, we are going to take care of it.”
Even so, Rouleau reported truckers have found no proof of a quick monitor for them. “Persons that are showing up to the board with their paperwork for professional transport have to hold out in line like absolutely everyone else. It is as if the message was not relayed to the security or personnel.”
This report by The Canadian Push was initial printed March 11, 2023.