(Story by Jill Sperling CFJC Today)
A Falkland woman who lost her husband to a commercial vehicle accident is pushing for changes in the way truckers are licensed.
Pattie Babij’s husband Steve and his dog were killed near Revelstoke last March.
Babij says another truck driver was charged with driving without due care and attention, and will have his first hearing next Wednesday.
Photo of Patti Babij by Kent Simmonds/CFJC Today
The tragedy prompted Babij to try and make changes to how easy it is for commercial drivers to receive their licenses.
“I am now petitioning to have the Class 1 licensing system to be federal rather than provincial, as well as have an apprenticeship program,” Babij said. “Class 1 licensing should actually be considered a trade. Right now hair stylists, carpenters, welders they require more training and education than a Class 1 license driver does.”
Babij brought her petition to the Interior Logging Association trade show in Kamloops over the weekend.
Two weeks ago, she launched the Facebook Page ‘Safer Public Roadways for Steve and Zak’ and she’s been overwhelmed by the response.
“I’ve had countless amounts of people reach out to me and say, ‘the Class 1 licenses are being handed out like candy, there’s not enough training, there isn’t enough supervision.'”
“As it is right now, you can get your license with a day cab and flat deck, and tomorrow you can go haul a load of logs across Canada.”