SUMMERSIDE — Uncovered loads and speed were contributing factors in a recent lime-dusting incident in the city.
Trucks from the Government Wharf were recently delivering loads of lime to the CRM Ready Mix Plant in St. Eleanors. The material began blowing off the trucks, coating several vehicles, including the fleet of vehicles at Centennial Motors.
Deputy Mayor Bruce MacDougall, who represents St. Eleanors on city council, raised the issue at a recent council meeting.
“I have no problem with hauling the larger granules that don’t blow the rock dust off like this last trucking to CRM did,” MacDougall said. “It was a fine dust and it coated every vehicle in St. Eleanors, including mine and I’m blocks away. It’s an issue that we need to deal with.”
MacDougall said it is a difficult situation because of the cost and time involved in covering these types of loads.
“I don’t know how we can gauge that,” he said.
If the city rules that everything has to be tarped, “We’re going to be putting up with trucks going twice as long. The larger granules we have no problems with, but when it’s rock dust like this, I think we should tarp them.”
The trucks were actually hauling lime, which, like the fine rock dust the deputy mayor was complaining about, is easily blown about, if it’s not tarped or watered down.
Summerside Chief Administrative Officer Bob Ashley spoke to the people involved and received assurances that all necessary precautions will be taken with future loads.
“I spoke to Police Chief (David) Poirier and to the plant manager at CRM,” Ashley said.
“He was good about recognizing the problem that was caused. I think it was perceived to be a little worse than it actually was. The last time this had happened was 2 1/2 years ago. They don’t order lime very often.”
Ashley said the CRM manager agreed to discuss the matter with the truckers.
He also noted that: “This wouldn’t have happened if it were raining.”
Contributing to the dusting was the speed the tractor-trailers were travelling from Government Wharf to the CRM.
Ashley said police would be keeping an eye on the speed of truck traffic in the area.
“We visited the manager of Centennial Honda,” the CAO said. “He was also very good.
“He had cars he had to wash, and fortunately, the material wasn’t abrasive at all.”
Ashley said CRM has agreed to forward the copies of future purchase orders to the city that will show the tonnage, the approximate date of delivery and what the material will be.
This way the city will know what is coming and how to prepare for it to avoid any future problems.