COVID-19 Prompts Manitoba to Ease Spring Road Restrictions

Infrastructure Minister Ron Schuler announced spring road restrictions would be eased in certain circumstances to ensure efficient transportation of essential commodities.

Groceries, livestock and feed, medical supplies, fuel, fertilizer, potable water not designated for industrial use, and emergency equipment are included in the list of essential commodities.

“This will help ensure communities continue to have access to items such as medical supplies, groceries and emergency equipment at this crucial time,” stated Schuler.

Spring thaw and rain cycles can compromise the durability of Manitoba highways. Spring weight restrictions are enforced at this time of year to protect roads from damage caused by heavy commercial vehicles. These are determined every year by analyzing the data from the previous season and are intended to minimize the impact on vulnerable or compromised pavement. Under normal conditions, axle weights are reduced when they are at risk of further weakening.

Under the revised restrictions, a vehicle may transport essential commodities on Level 1 road restricted highways at normal loading. Roads subject to Level 2 restrictions may also be used to transport essential goods at normal loading under specific conditions as well - for instance if the road is the most direct route between a vehicle's destination and the closest non-Level 2 highway. Empty vehicles travelling to pick up or just having delivered essential commodities may travel on Level 2 highways at Level 1 weights any time, provided they comply with the necessary conditions. Additionally, the transportation of grain for the purposes of quota or contract obligations, or moving potatoes or vegetables from producer to processor does not require a permit. However, vehicles exceeding posted weight restricted are not authorised to travel over bridges.

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