MTO Considers Smart Lift Axles on Trailers, Longer Tractors with Multi-Axle Trailers and other Advancements

MTO has posted a series of proposals to the Regulatory Register to address technological advancements in vehicle equipment and components as well as further harmonizing Ontario’s weights and dimensions regime with neighbouring jurisdictions.

“OTA has worked in close consultation with MTO over the past several years in advocating for the use of smart lift axles on trailers and for longer tractors to be used with multi-axle semi-trailers. We are pleased that MTO is proposing to follow its plan to move these items from a permit system established earlier into regulation,” said Geoff Wood, OTA’s senior vice president, Policy.

Moving from a permit regime to regulation is a logical progression for smart lift axles and longer tractors and reduces the regulatory burden for carriers to adopt more efficient technology supported by industry.

MTO’s proposals continue to strike a balance between safety, productivity and the protection of infrastructure while accommodating technological advances in truck and trailer equipment technology.

“Having the ability to propose changes to regulations, back those proposals up with sound and effective research and business cases, while still working within the principles of SPIF shows MTO is listening and that they are open for business and committed to reducing red tape for compliant trucking operations,” continued Wood.

In addition to moving smart lift axles and longer tractors into regulation, the  proposed amendments include:  additional allowances for wide-base, single tires that aligns with recent updates to the national MoU (advocated by CTA), haulage of boats on stinger-steer auto carriers, longer saddlemount combinations and modifying existing SPIF provisions for the use of emergency in-cab lift-axle control for self-steering axles.

OTA will work with its membership over the coming weeks to review the details of the proposals and provide additional feedback to the Ministry.

OTA members interested in a detailed backgrounder document on the MTO proposals can email

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