Trucking companies concerned with wait times to enter refinery
REGINA -- An owner of an independent trucking company trying to move product from the Co-op Refinery in Regina is concerned with how long her drivers are being held from entering the facility, as she says drivers are being let into the refinery in two hours intervals. It means drivers at the back of the line will be waiting for days before they get inside the refinery property.
On Thursday, a lineup of 48 trucks was halted at the refinery entrance by members of Unifor 594.
"These units truck and trailer are $380,000 plus the product in their trailer. They can not abandon these units. They're all professional drivers," owner of Pro Fuel Hauling Ltd. Jackie Savage said.
Since Unifor began picketing outside the refinery, savage says some truck drivers have been held inside the refinery for over 24 hours.
"They're stressed. They're tired of the waiting. They get in these lineups. And we had a driver that was detained for 24 hours. No access to food, shower, washrooms," Savage said.
Unifor says it has started letting drivers out of the refinery in 30 minute intervals.
"You know our motto is respect refinery workers. You know we have got to show the same respect back. So we changed it. The trucks are lining up on the inlet, but I think that's a dispatcher thing. I think they're just dispatching the trucks to make it look worse than it is,” Unifor 594 president Kevin Bittman said.
"Just step aside and let us do it. We're caught in the crossfires," Savage said.
"We apologize. There's always going to be people in the middle that are effected. We've told our workers that it is the reality of the situation that people in the middle are going to get effected," Bittman said.
Savage says despite the halting, the drivers are being treated fairly in every other way. They just want to do their job.