Game-Changer: Ont Implementing Mandatory Entry Level Training for Tractor-Trailer Drivers

(July 8, 2016) — As announced last week the Ministry of Transportation will be moving forward with their plans for Mandatory Entry Level Training (MELT) for all new class A licence holders. Earlier this week the Ministry released the full details of what the MELT training standard includes for class A licences.

OTA has put together a basic fact sheet below that outlines some of the key messages concerning this initiative that may be of interest to carriers. For complete details of the new training standard, please see the attached MTO document.

As part of OTA’s newly formed Councils, there will be a joint webinar session of the People, Planning and Development Council and Compliance and Freight Policy Council to discuss MELT and Next Steps held Wednesday August 10, 2016 – 10 am-11:30 am. All active Council members and OTA members are welcome to participate (free of charge). To register for this webinar, please click here. Participation on OTA Councils is open to representatives of all OTA member companies.

MELT Fact Sheet

Important Dates

· June 28, 2016 – Minister announces MELT is moving forward;

· July 4, 2016 – MTO releases full details of new training standard for class A licences (Commercial Truck Driver Training Standard (A));

· August 10, 2016 – OTA Council’s Webinar – MELT and Next Steps (full details at bottom of page);

· July 1, 2017 – date after which all prospective class A licence applicants must have taken an approved MELT course prior to taking Class A road tests.

What does MELT mean for carriers?

· The majority of the changes that come with MELT will be invisible to carriers and will occur before the driver comes to their facility to apply for a job with their new class A licence, unless they are involved with MTO’s Driver Certification Program (DCP);

· Class A drivers who receive their licence on or after July 1, 2017 will have taken an approved Commercial Truck Driver Training (A) course;

· Carriers enrolled in MTO’s Driver Certification Program will be able to teach to the new Commercial Truck Driver Training Standard (A) and test to the new competency based road test before July 1, 2017 based on readiness and curriculum and road test approvals by MTO.

What is changing?

· Only those schools, or organizations (including DCP participants) approved by the province will be able to deliver the Commercial Truck Driver Training Standard (A) course;

· The Private Career Colleges (PCCs) will be listed on the ServiceOntario website once they are approved and a link to ServiceOntario’s website will be available on MTO’s website as well;

· DCP participants will be notified by MTO of the program requirements in order to meet MELT (information concerning upgrading their program to MELT will be sent out);

· It will take approximately four to six weeks to complete the required training (in-class and practical);

· The amount of time schools and DCP participants must follow for in-class, in-yard and in-cab in the Commercial Truck Driver Training Standard (A); training is specified;

· Instructors giving the training will need to meet specific requirements;

· MTO knowledge test will be competency based with new questions;

· MTO road test will be competency based and include specific backing and minimum prescriptive driving skills demonstrations.

What is not changing?

· Drivers must still be 18 years or older to apply for an A class licence;

· Drivers must hold a valid G class of higher class of licence to be eligible for class A licences;

· Drivers must still submit a Valid Medical Report upon application for a class A licence;

· Drivers must still meet vision standards to be eligible for a class A licence;

· Requirements for Signing Authorities in the DCP remains unchanged.

MELT items still in development stages (additional details to be communicated to OTA membership when available)

· Availability of funding from government for prospective class A drivers to take MELT;

· Instructor qualifications for driving schools;

· Minimum vehicle configurations required for entry level training and road tests;

· OTA will be developing materials and standard curriculum guidelines for interested members who participate in or wish to participate in DCP going forward (estimated completion Fall 2016);

Additional Outreach Information

· OTA member carriers interested in learning more about MELT in general and the DCP program and OTA’s efforts on this issue can contact operations&safety@ontruck.org