VICTORIA, B.C. – The Province has implemented mandatory entry-level training (MELT) for new Class 1 commercial driver’s licence applicants.
MELT will mean safer, more skilled commercial drivers on B.C. roads.
“Safety for everyone on our roads is always our top priority, and this new required driver training program will make our highways safer,” said Rob Fleming, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure.
“A robust MELT program is just one of the ways we are committed to improving highway safety for all British Columbians.”
Effective Monday, October 18th, those applying for a Class 1 driver’s licence are to successfully complete an ICBC-approved Class 1 MELT course before attempting their road test.
The MELT program was designed to align with the Standard 16-Class 1 Entry-Level Training framework that was introduced as part of the National Safety Code in February 2020.
“British Columbia’s new MELT program is an important step toward improving overall commercial vehicle safety across Canada,” said Lawrence and Ginny Hunter, Safer Roads Canada board members whose 18-year-old son Logan was fatally injured in the 2018 Humboldt Broncos bus crash.
“Truck and bus drivers operate some of the heaviest vehicles on our roads through a variety of climates and on challenging routes. The risks are present every day for these workers, but programs like MELT help to mitigate these risks and prevent accidents.”
The MELT program requires 140 total hours and includes more practical behind-the-wheel driving hours, in-yard hours, and the theoretical instructional hours than Standard 16 of the National Safety Code.
To ensure that commercial drivers will be prepared for B.C.’s highway network and changing weather, MELT will also emphasize safe operating practices for mountainous geography and various challenging driving conditions, including learning and demonstrating how to properly chain up a vehicle for winter driving.
Currently, there are 46 schools across the province qualified to offer MELT.