Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Flooded-out 75 equals higher prices

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THE Manitoba Trucking Association is warning shippers and consumers they face price increases and delivery delays because of anticipated flooding this spring in southern Manitoba.

"Based on our estimates, it costs the trucking industry an additional $1.5 million for every week that Highway 75 (between Winnipeg and Emerson) is shut down," the association said Monday.

It noted flood forecasters are predicting this year's flood could rival that of 2009, which saw Highway 75 closed for 38 days.

"That means that the estimated additional cost to the trucking industry will be in excess of $8 million dollars," said association executive director Bob Dolyniuk.

Dolyniuk said it's estimated up to 1,100 trucks per day pass through the Canada-U.S. border crossing at Emerson. If Highway 75 is closed at Morris, those trucks will have to make a 100-kilometre detour via Highway 3, which will delay deliveries, drive up fuel costs and add wear and tear on the vehicles. "And all of those costs add up," he added.

General manager Terry Shaw said the association's long-standing position is Highway 75 must be rebuilt so it's no longer affected by flooding.

"To be preparing for the closure of this highway due to flooding once again emphasizes the long-known need to either better protect Highway 75 at Morris, or find a reasonable and more direct alternative route," he said.

 

-- Murray McNeill

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition April 23, 2013 B4

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