Silviculture association hosts training for crews working with light trucks

October 27, 2009

As part of a province-wide effort to improve safety on resources roads, the Western Silviculture Contractors' Association is leading a series of training sessions on operating light trucks.

In Prince George this week, those who are in the tree planting and brushing business, as well as forestry consultants are taking part in an instructor training course aimed at raising awareness of safety issues with light trucks, as well as hands-on skills for operating the trucks safely.

The instructor trainees - who joined Prince George attendees from communities like Kamloops, Quesnel and Terrace - are expected to carry out training with hundreds of other workers through north and central B.C.

The back roads of northern British Columbia can be dangerous.

In the spring of 2008, a 25-year-old Montreal woman was killed when she was ejected from a crew-cab pickup carrying a tree-planting crew that rolled on a logging road south of Vanderhoof.
"We like to think we're hauling the most precious commodity that's out there - and that's people," Western Silviculture Contractors' Association executive director John Betts said Tuesday.

Since silviculture work is carried out in remote forested areas, workers collectively log millions of kilometres of travel time on resource roads, noted Betts. "This is part of a campaign to eliminate crashes on resource roads," he said.

Betts consulted with silviculture contractors to combine the best practices of individual company training programs already in place in an effort to set a standard for the industry.

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