PUSLINCH – Dufferin Aggregates has been granted a two-week extension of a temporary agreement for extended hours and an alternative haul route through Morriston during roundabout construction at Wellington Roads 46 (Brock Road) and 34.
The temporary agreement, originally approved by Puslinch council on Sept. 2, allows Dufferin Aggregates to haul from 7am to 7pm.
As for the haul route, trucks will take the normal route from Aberfoyle Pit 2 (4445 Victoria Road South) north on Victoria Road to Wellington Road 34, west to Brock Road, then south to the Aberfoyle Pit 1 (125 Brock Road) entrance beside Nestle Waters Canada in Aberfoyle.
This will take trucks through the construction zone.
To return trucks are travelling to Pit 2 on Victoria Road via an alternate route by travelling south east on Brock Road to Badenoch Street (Wellington Road 36), north east to Victoria Road and then north to the site.
At the Sept. 16 virtual council meeting, Kevin Mitchell of CRH Canada Group Inc., which operates in Puslinch as Dufferin Aggregates, told council the agreement to extend hours to 7am to 7pm was helpful.
However, depending on the stage of construction taking place, Dufferin Aggregates will be required to use alternative trucks, leading to less aggregate being hauled daily.
On some days the pit operator won’t be able to haul at all.
“We’ll just be shut down from going through there,” he said.
“As a result of the reduced trucks and the shortage and that sort of thing we have eaten into our stockpile.
“We have a little bit left there but because of the additional cost we have not been hauling excess materials.”
Dufferin has been using about 11 trucks per day and it takes about 15 minutes longer for each truck to make the round trip. Typically, Dufferin uses eight to 10 trucks per day.
Since Dufferin began using the temporary haul route on Sept. 11, Mitchell said the operator had received one complaint from a resident about a truck speeding.
“They gave us a license plate, we spoke to the truck driver and that’s all we’ve heard from anybody,” Mitchell said.
However, councillor Matthew Bulmer said he’s received at least three complaints from residents that addressed road safety, speeding and damage to Victoria Road.
He asked whether the Wellington County OPP could offer an additional presence in the area to encourage all traffic to follow the rules of the road.
“We as council can just contact Mr. Richardson, our detachment commander for the OPP and ask for additional enforcement in Morriston while this agreement is in place, if that’s your desire,” Mayor James Seeley said.
However, he suggested Mitchell give his drivers one more chance before council asks the OPP for assistance.
“The last thing a commercial vehicle operator wants is demerit points against their commercial CVOR (commercial vehicle operator’s registration) and their personal license because then their insurance rates go through the roof,” Seeley said.
“So I think … a warning shot over the bow would be appropriate first and we can continue to monitor it.
“And I would encourage council members if they receive any speeding complaints to forward them to all of council and then we can deal with it.”
Mitchell said he had no issue with extra policing.
“We tell the drivers all the time that they need to respect the rules of the road in the communities in which we operate and so we fully support the township,” he said.
Seeley also mentioned he has seen work trucks parked on Victoria Road with their four-way lights on waiting for the gate to Pit 2 to open in the mornings.
“That is not allowed by us,” Mitchell said. “I’m glad you brought that up. I was not aware of that and I will address that as well.
“That will not be happening and if it does please don’t hesitate to reach out and let me know.”
As for road damage complaints, Bulmer said he received more complaints about Victoria Road than Badenoch Street.
“I hadn’t anticipated how shocked they would be at us allowing trucks on a brand new road that they just paid to have redone last year,” Bulmer said.
Public works and parks supervisor Mike Fowler said the township has been monitoring Victoria Road and there have been no signs of distress or damage to the road since use of the temporary haul route began.
“The one reason this road was identified as being a suitable detour route was because of the current volume of traffic,” said Fowler.
“Last year it was constructed above township’s expectations or requirements. There is a little more cushion to basically accept this type of heavy traffic.
“But it’s certainly not something I would encourage as a full-time endeavour.”
Councillor Jessica Goyda asked if the road would be able to handle another two weeks of usage.
“In my opinion another two weeks would not be detrimental to the road,” Fowler said.
“We are entering fall, where cooler daytime temperatures are also in our favour, so we don’t have extreme heat heating up the road’s surface and causing rutting or anything like that.
“So I’m comfortable with another two-week extension.”
Seeley also reminded council the trucks are empty when they’re travelling on the newly-paved portion of Victoria Road.
Council granted the two-week extension for the alternative haul route and extended operating hours while the construction continues.