Letter to the editor:
We at Santorelli’s are writing about the city’s efforts to put a weight restriction on Arthur Street from 25th side road to Highway 61.
The justification used is public safety. However, their own report indicates that there were four accidents involving transports between 2004 and 2014. There is no evidence that the drivers of the transport trucks were at fault. Recent data reports only one accident since 2012 involving a transport and in that accident, the other driver was at fault. Everyone knows that there are a lot more than four accidents on Arthur Street in any given month let alone ten years. While no one wants to see any accidents, one accident every 2.5 years involving trucks on average does not create a safety concern. These trucks make up 3.6 percent of the traffic on Arthur Street, not a large percentage. We all need to remember that these trucks deliver much needed products to local businesses.
Santorelli’s employees 25 people at our business. The majority of our employees live in the City of Thunder Bay and all of them spend their paycheques within Thunder Bay. On the Arthur street corridor between 25th side road and Highway 17 there are approximately 40 businesses employing over 700 employees with an annual payroll of over 35 million dollars. These businesses all are involved in trucking in some way or fashion. Putting a weight restriction on Arthur Street will increase the cost of business for them. We all realize as costs go up most business have to make cuts somewhere usually resulting in less employees. One other thing to consider is that these are all local people spending their money in the City of Thunder Bay making deliveries to local businesses.
Once again Administration is bringing their Designated Truck Route back to council. They are trying to use the DTR to put a weight restriction on Arthur street and Dawson Road, without proper signage. Their Designated Truck Route is the old Hazardous Goods Route out to the Island. Administration has found out the hard way that they have no jurisdiction over provincial highways. They cannot be used as part of their DTR. In 2014 senior administration recommended that things be left the way they are. The Chief of Police at the time told them that it would be unenforceable. Administration is aware that there will be an additional cost to the City for material delivered to the south side of the City. This means to have work done for half of the City there will be an additional cost to be borne by the tax payers.
In conclusion do we want to put these jobs at risk? We all realize that for every job lost it affects another seven people’s employment at a minimum.
Thank You, Lorne Kellar Comptroller Santorelli’s